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Copyright, 1917, 

All rights reserved 
Published November, 1917 

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THE last twenty-five years have marked many 
movements for the amelioration of conditions under 
which people live and labor. Housing, Child Labor, 
Industrial Conditions, Tuberculosis, Insanity, all 
have come under our purview. In each case the 
movement has become definite and effective when 
academic moralizing has given place to personal 
visitation, when suggestion and direction have been 
had from those who have looked for themselves and 
speak with the authority of experience. 

Penology, criminology, etc., have been the specula- 
tion of the wise in their own conceit. The prisoner 
has remained an abstraction to be babbled about, 
though never really known a thing apart, dis- 
owned, investigated at arm's length for fear that the 
contagion might possess the investigator. 

The humanness and fallibility of convicted and 
unconvicted alike have raised a barrier between the 
prisoner and those who attempted to study him. 
His criminal characteristics, his love of evil, and the 
outlawry of his practices have all been discussed in 
the third person, but it has been dangerous to admit ' 
that he is simply a man like ourselves, the difference 
being that a chance turn of the wheel of justice has 
singled out one of his acts and condemned it with the 
power of the law. 



But the new day has dawned for the prisoner. At 
last we look for ourselves ! 

Having brought the study of the prisoner to the 
basis of scientific reality, having divorced from our / 
discussion the thought of our own superiority and 
having sought the interpretation of the problem from 
the only one who can really interpret it the pris- 
oner himself we can feel that our effort will reach 
to the heart of a great problem, that our rising knowl- 
edge will help to lift the whole superstructure of 

What have we learned ? That our former methods V 
of dealing with the prisoner have sent him from the 
prison less able than at entrance to conform to the 
standards of society; that we must call upon the 
physician, the psychiatrist, to help discover what 
manner of man the prisoner is; that we must fit 
him for outside life through industrial training, 
through educational methods, through responsibility 
assumed in governing himself; and that we must 
stand beside him on release and aid him in making 
those social contacts through which he can re- 
establish himself. . 

After seven years of scientific study and personal 
investigation, the National Committee on Prisons 
and Prison Labor is in position to point to the solu- 
tion of these several problems, to call upon those 
associated in its work for authoritative recommenda- 
tion based on personal experience. 

What is the pressing need to-day? Men and 
women to carry on the work ; men and women with 
the broad conception of the problem, trained to meet 


the issues it presents. Such workers the Committee 
is prepared to train. Through the cooperation of 
the President and Trustees of Columbia University, 
courses have been established in practical penal 
problems, and another year, it is hoped, will see these 
courses available through correspondence to students 
throughout the United States. 

The perusal of the articles contained in the follow- 
ing pages will convince the reader that there has been 
secured a broad, scientific background of fact upon 
which can be based in the years to come the training 
of prison workers, the constructive reform of our 
institutions, and the accurate case study of individ- 
uals in these institutions development which can 
only follow the routing of the forces of exploitation 
and the establishment of the new relationship with 
the man in prison. 

E. S. W. 



Introduction vii 

Cases Cited xv 

I The Prisoner and the Courts ... 1 


Judge, Court of General Sessions, New York City 

II The Prisoner Himself . \ : . . . 21 


Director, Psychiatric Clinic, Sing Sing Prison 


Medical Director, National Committee for Mental 

III The Prisoner Ward or Slave? . . 47 

Of the New York Bar 

IV The Control over the Prisoner . . . 81 

Chairman, Committee on the Federal Office of 
Prisons, National Committee on Prisons and 
Prison Labor 




Chairman, Executive Council, National Commit- 
tee on Prisons and Prison Labor 

V Self-Government by the Prisoner . . 99 
Former Warden Sing Sing Prison, New York 



Treasurer, Connecticut State Reformatory 

VI The Prison Officer , . * . 115 

Former Principal Keeper, Sing Sing Prison, New 

VII Industrial Training for the Prisoner . 125 


Director of Agricultural and Industrial Educa- 
tion, New York State Department of Educa- 
tion, and Professor of Vocational Education, 
Teachers College, Columbia University 

VIII The Prisoner in the Road Camp . . 151 

President, National Highways Association 

IX The Union Man and the Prisoner . . .163 


Vice President, International Boot and Shoe 
Workers' Union 



X The Man Who Comes out of Prison . 177 


Chairman, Committee on Employment, National 
Committee on Prisons and Prison Labor 

XI The Community Center and the De- 
linquent . . . . . . 187 


Director, The Training School for Community 
Workers, New York ; Secretary National Com- 
munity Center Association 

Index 203 


Anderson v. Crescent Gar- 
ment Co 52 

Andrews v. Page, 3 Heisk. 
(Tenn.) 635, 668 55 

Avery v. Everett, 110 N. 
Y. 317 62 

Harrington v. Logan, 2 

Dana (Ky.) 432, 434 ... 63 
Bowles v. Habermann, 95 

N. Y. 246 62 

Buchalew v. Tennessee 

Coal, etc. Co., 112 Ala. 

146,157(1895) 68,73 

Clyatt, United States, 197 
U.S. 207, 218 73 

Craig's Adm'r v. Lee, 53 
Ky. 96 59 

Cunningham v. Bay State, 
25 Hun. 210 63 

Dassler, In re, 35 Kans. 

678, 684 (1886) 69 

Dave v. State, 22 Ala. 23, 

34 56 

Exeter v. Warwick, 1 R. I. 
63, 65 68 

Gaudet v. Gourdain, 3 La. 

Ann. 136 55 

Gist v. Toohey, 2 Rich. (S. 

C.) 424 62 

Guardian of Sally v. Beaty, 
lBay(S.C.) 260 54 

Hall v. U. S., 92 U. S. 27 . . 62 

Jackson v. Lervey, 5 Cow. 

(N. Y.) 397 55 

James v. Carper, 4 Sneed 

(Tenn.) 397 59 

Jameson v. McCoy, 5 Heisk. 

(Tenn.) 108 55 

Kennedy v. Meara, 127 Ga. 

68,77 68,74 

Kenyon v. Saunders, 18 

R. I. 590, 592 54,69 

La Chapelle v. Burpee, 69 
Hun. 436 62 

Latimer v. Alexander, 14 
Ga. 259 59 

Mayor etc. of Monroe v. 

Meuer, 35 La. Ann. 1192 69 
Miller v. D willing, 14 Serg. 

and R. 442 63 

Nelson v. People, 33 HI. 390 
(lS64<),semble. . 58 

Nugent v. Arizona Co., 173 
U. S. 338 67 

Oliver v. Sale, Quincy 
(Mass.) 29 note 55 



Oliver . State, 39 Miss. 
526, 539 56 

Peonage Cases, 123 Fed. 

(1903) 69 

People v. Hawkins, 157 

N. Y. 1 170 

Plessy v. Ferguson, 163 

U. S. 537 53 

Rice v. Cade, 10 La. 288, 
294 54 

Robertson v. Baldwin, 165 
U.S. 275, 282 69,74 

Slaughter House Cases, 16 
Wall. 36, 42 66 

Stenhouse v. Bonum, 12 

Rich. (S. C.) 620 62 

Stephani v. Lent, 63 Supp. 

(N. Y.) 471 62 

St. Louis, etc. v. Boyle, 83 

Ark. 302 63 

St. Louis, etc. Co. v. Hy- 

drick (1913), 160 S. W. 

(Ark.) 196 62 

Topeka v. Boutwell, 53 
Kans. 20, 27 L. R. A. 
593 (1894) 69 

Westbrook v. State, 133 
Ga. 578, 585 (1909) . . .62, 72 

Wicks v. Chew, 4 H. & J. 
(Md.) 543, 547 62 


Judge, Court of General Sessions, New York City 


BEFORE considering how to do a thing it is impor- 
tant to know what the thing is that you want to do. 
The first inquiry, therefore, before discussing method 
is to consider purpose. It is generally admitted 
by thoughtful minds that the purpose of the ad- 
ministration of the criminal law is not the avenging 
of society on the wrongdoer; not the infliction of/ 
punishment for the sake of getting even. It must 
be generally conceded that the purpose of the ad- 
ministration of the criminal law is to protect society 
against the commission of crime. In order that the 
community may enjoy life, liberty, and the pursuit 
of happiness, ever since organized communities have 
existed, certain rules of conduct have been pre- 
scribed, the violation of which has been termed 
crime. Different rules have prevailed at different 
periods in the world's history. The rules are also 
found to be different in the same period in different 
countries, and even in the same country in different 
localities. In the United States there is a marked 
difference in the several States in the definitions of 
the degrees of larceny and homicide. As these 
rules are made, they differ according to the character 



understanding of the makers and represent the 
views of the lawmaking powers. Crime is the do- 
ing of that which is prohibited by the lawmaking 
power of a particular community. 

This discussion does not undertake to determine 
whether all the laws are wise or unwise. From the 
time when Moses, the great lawgiver, returned from 
Mt. Sinai with the ten commandments, rules of 
conduct have been formulated by ecclesiastic and 
temporal power. It may be said, as in the making 
of books so in the making of laws, there is no end. 
Each succeeding year the duly constituted law- 
makers return from their several Sinais with new 
books of the law. This must necessarily be so, as 
these rules of conduct represent the consensus of 
opinion, at least the opinion that has power to make 
the law for the time, as to what is desirable and 
necessary for the protection of society. The deter- 
mination of what shall constitute crime is in the 
hands of the lawmakers. The legislatures not only 
formulate the definitions of crime but also make the 
laws with respect to the procedure, the penalties, 
the administration and government of penal institu- 
tions. The law may, therefore, be divided on this 
topic into two heads, the definition of what crime is 
and the regulations with respect to the administra- 
tion of the criminal law. 

/ The function of the courts is to determine whether 
crime, as defined, has been committed and having 
so determined to pronounce sentence in accordance 
with the law. The endless procession of the un- 
fortunate and the vicious who are charged with the 


commission of crimes passes before the judge. 
Men, women, and children are brought before the 
court by the police. It may be said with truth that 
in the last analysis they are not brought in by the 
police, although the police are the instruments of 
arrest, but that often they are the victims of social 
conditions which arrest their lives and bring them 
into court. If there is to be any permanent pre- 
vention of crime, it must be stopped at the source 
by changing the conditions which lead to crime.\ 
The submerging power of poverty, failure in the 
care and culture of children, careless neglect of the 
unadjusted and defective are undoubtedly some of 
the underlying causes of crime and lead to what is 
generally termed bad environment, such as conges- 
tion, bad housing, unemployment, and the abuse of 
drink, which are so often found to be the imme- 
jliate ^nciting causes of crime. These questions 
present the great struggle of the human race, and 
it must be conceded that they are the more impor- 
tant questions. But we have to turn our attention 
to the immediate need of things, and conditions be- , 
ing as they are and crime being committed, what 
shall be done Vith the offender that society may 
best be protected? 

The emphasis has heretofore been laid upon the 
capture and conviction of the offender. It was not 
long ago that the criminal was permanently put out 
of the way, even for minor offenses, by hanging. 
As late as 1794, men were hanged in the State of New 
York for larceny. When juries would no longer 
convict in such cases, the pressure of public opinion 


changed the punishment to imprisonment, and 
apparently the only thought was that the offender 
should be safely locked up. When it has been estab- 
lished that the offender has violated the rules which 
society has made for its protection, and it appears 
likely that he will violate them again, the offender 
must be set apart for a time. Under this system, 
when the time of his detention terminates, he is 
released. The great contribution of Thomas Mott 
Osborne is the emphasis which he has placed upon 
the fact that under the prison sentence method the 
offender comes back. At the end of his sentence he is 
returned to society. Under the old prison method 
frequently he returned crushed in body and in 
mind by reason of his neglect and confinement, less 
equipped to take his place in the community than 
when he went in, and often filled with a spirit of 
hatred and revenge, a worse man than when he 
went in. The result was that he failed to take his 
place in society, returned to commit crime again, 
and if caught was sent to prison for another term. 
An investigation has shown that over sixty per cent 
of the men in Sing Sing Prison, New York, had been 
in jail before, many of them many times before. 
In a recent tour of prisons of twelve States I found 
no case in which less than fifty per cent of the inmates 
of the prisons were old offenders; in some cases 
the estimates given by the keepers and wardens 
were as high as ninety per cent. In one convict 
camp the entire "gang" had been in prison before. 
The jails, reformatories, penitentiaries, and prisons 
have been turning out a veritable army of ex-con- 


victs. 1 When the percentage of those who are caught 
and returned to the prisons because they have again 
committed crimes is considered, it is obvious that 
the State is deeply concerned to bring about an 
administration of prisons which will lessen the num- 
ber of habitual offenders. As a matter of self -pro- 
tection it is only common sense to take measures to 
protect the community against the coming back of 
these men. While in jail these offenders are the 
wards of the State. The State has a responsibility, 
which it cannot avoid, to take that care which will 
best insure against the recommission of crime by 
these wards when they are released. 

In reviewing the cases which have passed before 
me in the Court of General Sessions in the City of 
New York, I have been impressed with the large 
number of men approximately one in three 
who have criminal records. 2 Many of them began 
in juvenile institutions from which they were ap- 
parently graduated to reformatories, penitentiaries, 

J The number discharged or paroled in 1910 from New York penal 
institutions, as shown by the last United States Census, was from State 
prisons and penitentiaries 1,421, from State reformatories 1,894, from 
County jails and workhouses 37,353, from Municipal jails and work- 
houses 2,886, from institutions for juvenile delinquents 2,337, making 
the total number discharged from New York State jails in one year 
45,885. The total number discharged in 1910 from all jails in the United 
States was 468,277. 

2 In 1914, the total number of convictions in the Court of General 
Sessions of the City and County of New York was 3,724, of whom 1,227 
had been in jail before. In 1915, the total number of convictions was 
3,728, of which number 1,348 were old offenders, and in 1916, the total 
number of convictions was 2,834, of whom 1,113 had been previously 


and State prisons. Many of them were obviously 
feeble-minded or mentally deficient.' The Great 
Britain Royal Commission on the Care of the Feeble- 
minded, which made the most elaborate study of 
the problem ever undertaken, in discussing the rela- 
tionship of mental deficiency to crime, gives 10.28 
per cent as an extremely conservative estimate of 
the proportion of feeble-minded in the prison popu- 
lation. 1 Doctor Henry H. Goddard, writing on 
the situation in this country, states: "Although 
we cannot determine at present just what the 
proportion is, probably from 25 % to 50 % of the 
people in our prisons are mentally defective and 
incapable of managing their affairs with ordinary 
prudence." 2 Of course, feeble-mindedness may be 
variously defined, but the lower grades which are 
unable to care for themselves or to adjust themselves 
to their surrounding social conditions may be readily 

\ Among the prisoners there are also a large num- 
ber who are not prepared, by reason of lack of train- 
ing, mental and physical, to properly provide a 
living for themselves or those dependent upon them, 
and there are also many who by reason of environ- 
ment have been warped but who are capable of 

All those who are convicted must be sentenced 
by the court. Under the laws of New York State 

1 As cited in the Report of the New York State Commission to Investi- 
gate Provision for the Mentally Deficient, 1915, p. 50. 

2 Henry H. Goddard, "Feeble-mindedness its Causes and Conse- 
quences," p. 7. 

PRISONER JtNt> Ttit COtfRT& 9 

and in many other States there is a choice of institu- 
tions and of the length of sentence which may be 
imposed. In some States there is neither choice 
of institutions nor of the length of sentence, the 
sentence being prescribed by law "to fit" the crime, 
regardless of the particular facts of the case. The 
inadequacy of such method to properly protect 
society against the commission of crime is obvious. 
With growing experience new lessons should be 
learned, but through the experience of the last few 
years, while attention has been drawn to the fact 
that the men "come back", that they come out of 
prison to take places in society, a point has been 
reached where certain conclusions may be drawn 
from the experiments already made. 

There are three essentials in the new prisons, 
methods : classification, preparation to come out, 
and the indeterminate sentence. 

CLASSIFICATION. The records show that certain , 
types, which are not classified in law as legally in- 
sane, are a menace, often even more dangerous than 
the insane. A feeble-minded person with a criminal 
tendency, when left uncared for, will recommit 
crime, no matter how many times he has been in jail. 
One case in my experience may be sufficient to il- 
lustrate the point. In 1907, a boy was committed 
to Randall's Island, it being known at the time 
that he was mentally deficient. At the end of his 
term he was released and committed another crime, 
after which he was again released; he committed 
a third crime and was sent to the penitentiary. 
Later, he was brought before me, having committed 


forcible abduction upon a schoolgirl. No institu- 
tion had been provided by the State of New York 
for the especial care of the feeble-minded delinquent. 
Under the auspices of the National Committee on 
Prisons and Prison Labor, and with the aid of a 
generous gift, a psychiatric clinic has been established 
at Sing Sing Prison for the purpose of examination 
and classification of the inmates, and it is a part of 
the plan of the new Prison Commission of New York 
State to provide for the suitable care and custody 
of defective delinquents. Recently, the legislature 
of the State of New York appointed a commission 
to make investigation and proper provision in the 
State for such cases. 1 

Mentally deficient persons with criminal tenden- 
cies should be under proper restraint until such time 
as it appears that they are in proper condition to 
be released. It is obvious that a mentally deficient 
person should be removed from society not only 
for his own protection but also for the protection 
of the community, and for like reason he should be 
set apart from other offenders because he cannot 
adjust himself to prison life with normal prisoners; 
he interferes with the industries and the discipline 
of the prison, and before his status is understood 
he is often abused and disciplined for faults which 
he cannot help. Classification should also segre- 
gate those who are suffering from infectious venereal 
diseases and should provide for the separate care 
of those who have tuberculosis. It is extraordinary 

1 2, sub-sec. 9, c. 238, N. Y. Laws, 1917, known as Hospital Develop- 
ment Commission. 


that in many States the first step in classification, 
the separation of children from adults by provision 
for children's courts and juvenile institutional care, 
has not been taken. 

take his place in society when released from prison, 
he should be healthy in body. Therefore, his hous- 
ing and conditions of living should be such as do 
not destroy his health. 1 He should have sufficient 
air, light, exercise, and recreation to build him up. 
He should also be equipped to take part in some use- 
ful wage-earning occupation. It is for this reason 
that vocational and trade schools have been intro- 
duced and the reorganization of prison industries 
undertaken with a view not only to produce revenue 
for the State but also to afford educational facilities 
for the inmates by the most progressive prison man- 

The building up of the body and the training of 
the mind and the hand are not, however, in them- 
selves sufficient to protect society against the com- 
mission of crime by the inmate when he comes out. 
They help, because they give him a better oppor- 
tunity to face the, world and to take part in useful 
occupation, but bodily health and mental equipment 
may, if diverted to wrong use, only make a more 
dangerous criminal of the offender. Something 
more is needed. Something which will give a new 
motive to the life, which will create a new attitude 

1 The author drafted the clause which provides "for the demolition 
of the present cell house and cell block at Sing Sing." (N. Y. Laws, 
1916, c. 594.) 


of mind, a new purpose and determination to make 
good. The most approved buildings, educational 
classes, industrial schools, even outdoor work, will 
not necessarily produce the desired result. All 
these improvements and changes are obviously ap- 
propriate and will be adopted by a State which 
undertakes to deal in an intelligent way with the 
prison problem, but the greatest of all experiments 
which has been made in prison management, the 
Mutual Welfare League, 1 has demonstrated, even 
under adverse conditions, adverse conditions of 
housing, of old and inadequate machinery for the 
industries, and under limitations of ancient legal 
restrictions, that genuine correction, the birth of 
a new hope, resolution to lead correct and honest 
lives and the actual living of them after release, 
may be accomplished by the simple means of self- 
government in the prisons. By this method the 
men are taught a sense of responsibility to the 
small community within the prison, from which 
they learn a sense of responsibility to the larger 
community without the prison. It would be diffi- 
cult to convince any one by assertion that the 
principle of democracy so applied would produce 
the remarkable results which it has achieved among 
the men who had been convicted of crime, but the 
facts establish the case. The results were imme- 
diately noticeable in the prison itself. It was ob- 
servable in the bearing and the appearance of the 

1 Inaugurated at Auburn Prison, New York, February 1913 ; and at 
Sing Sing Prison, New York, December, 1914, by Thomas Mott 


men; it was reflected by their conduct while in 
prison. 1 

But the best proof is the record of the men after 
coming out of prison. The final test of the efficiency 
of any institution from the point of view of accom- 
plishing the desired purpose of the administration 
of the criminal law, namely the protection of society 
against the recommission of crime, is the record of the 
convicts after their release. From January 1, 1915, 
to July 1, 1917, hundreds of men have appeared 
before me who have been released from penal in- 
stitutions and who have returned to the commission 
of crime, but during that entire period only three 
have been brought before me who were released 
from Sing Sing Prison since the Mutual Welfare 
League was established. Thinking that perhaps my 
experience was, through some accident of chance, 
exceptional, I made inquiry and have a letter from 
the Superintendent of Prisons of New York, Mr. 
Carter, stating that during the year 1916, among 
the hundreds who had been released from Sing Sing, 
only fifteen had been returned for the recommission 
of crime. 

The old prison method was a demonstrated fail- 
ure, if it be viewed from the standpoint of the record 
of its inmates when released from prison, but it was 
a record which was to be expected from the unin- 
telligent treatment of those in the care of the State. 

1 In 1912-1913, with a prison population of 1,442, the surgeons dressed 
387 wounds; in 1913-1914, with a prison population of 1,466, they 
dressed 367 wounds, and in 1914-1915, under Mr. Osborne, with a 
prison population of 1,616, they dressed 156 wounds, or a decrease of 
64 per cent. 


Now that we know better, our responsibility is 
greater. We should put into effect as rapidly as 
possible those methods which have produced the 
best results. 

SENTENCE. Having in mind that the convict 
is to come out, the question of sentence necessarily 
requires consideration. When is he to come out ? 
How long is he to be held? The obvious answer , 
is that he should be released when he is ready and 
equipped, when it is safe for him to be released^: 
Under the present method in some States the jury, 
merely hearing the facts of the crime, everything 
else would be irrelevant and immaterial, and there- 
fore excluded, determines off-lfand the sentence, 
that is, when the defendant shall be released. In 
many States, as in the State of New York, the sen- 
tence is fixed by the judge within the limitations 
of the law, which provides a maximum which he 
may not exceed, and in some instances a minimum 
which he must impose. How long should the 
patient be detained at the hospital? The answer 
is until he is cured. But who can tell how he will 
respond to treatment ? Judges are called upon, with 
such information as they are able to gather at the 
moment generally without any knowledge of 
the underlying currents of the man's life, of his 
medical history, or his physical condition, of his 
environment, of his moral qualities excepting as 
shown by the particular instance before the judge 
to determine in advance just how long the defend- 
ant should be held. When that time expires he 
is released. All those who have to do with the 


management of penal institutions know perfectly 
well that inmates are released, because of the expira- 
tion of their terms, who are a menace to society 
and a danger to the community. On the other hand, 
there are men languishing in jail who, if released, 
would be capable of leading useful lives. 

Appreciating this situation, Doctor Katherine B. 
Davis, George W. Kirchwey, and I recommended 
the passage of a law which provided for what might 
be termed an experiment in a genuine indeterminate 
sentence. A bill was passed 1 and has been in opera- 
tion since January 1, 1916. It is commonly known 
as the Parole Law. The effect of its provisions is 
that defendants committed by judges in New York 
City to the workhouse may be held for an indeter- 
minate period of two years and those committed to 
the penitentiary may be held for an indeterminate 
period of three years, but may be released at any 
time before such maximum upon the recommenda- 
tion of the Parole Board, and in the case of those 
committed to the penitentiary with the approval of 
the court. I suggested that the report of the Parole 
Board be submitted to the court for approval for 
the reason that by this method the recommendation 
of the Parole Board was subject to judicial review 
and was given the publicity of open court, with an 
opportunity for any one, including the district 
attorney, to be heard in opposition, thereby avoid- 
ing possible objection that the determination to 
release was reached by a board in executive session, 

1 Chapter 579, N. Y. Laws, 1915, amended by c. 287, N. Y. Laws, 


without publicly stating its reasons. This method 
has worked with admirable success. During the 
year 1916, 1,836 men were committed to the peni- 
tentiary; of these, 519 have been released on pa- 
role. Of those released, 54 have violated the condi- 
tions of their parole and were returned. Of the 
remaining 463 on parole about 96 per cent are appar- 
ently endeavoring to make good. During the same 
year, 74 women were committed to the penitentiary, 
sixteen of whom have been released on parole; of 
those released, only one has violated the conditions 
of her parole and been returned. There were com- 
mitted to the workhouse 400 men and 334 women 
in 1916. Of this number, 114 men and 109 women 
have been paroled. Three men and eight women 
were subsequently returned for violation of their 
parole or have been arrested for other offenses. 1 

By this method, instead of guessing in advance 
just how long a prisoner shall be held, the court 
determines in view of all the circumstances of the 
crime and also the character of the defendant, upon 
application and hearing, that the prisoner may now 
come forth from the prison on a trial of liberty. In- 
formation is obtained as to where the defendant is 
going, whether he has employment, whether he has 
relatives or friends to look after him. He is always 
released on parole, that is, a trial of liberty, and if 
he fails to make good may be returned. The sys- 
tem has worked so well in penitentiary sentences 
that it should be extended to State prison sentences. 

In view of the fact that by long custom maximum 
1 Annual Report, 1916, N. Y. City Parole Commission. 


sentences for different crimes have been established 
by law, the transition in New York State could 
be easily effected by allowing the maximums to 
remain as they are. Upon the conviction of the 
defendant, unless sentence was suspended, he would 
merely be committed by the court to State prison, 
the law fixing the maximum for the crime as, the 
longest time during which he could be held, with 
the provision that upon the recommendation of 
the Parole Board, with the approval of the court, he 
could be sooner released. 

The question as to the deterrent effect of pun- x 
ishment is frequently raised by sincere inquirers 
as to the best method to be pursued. It is in- 
teresting to note that there are several classes 
of persons who commit crime upon whom the 
thought of punishment has little effect. First, 
there are the calculating crooks who never expect 
to be caught. This is frequently illustrated by old 
crooks who can always point out the mistake which 
led to detection and how they could avoid detection 
another time. Then there are those who commit 
crime in the heat of passion without thought of the 
consequences. I am satisfied from my observation 
that the effect of punishment as a deterrent has been 
exaggerated. It was supposed that crime could 
be suppressed by cruel and what we would now con- 
sider inhuman treatment, but the desired result was 
not produced. The most effective result is produced 
by swift and sure conviction in case of guilt. The 
punishment consists in depriving the defendant of 
his liberty. There is greater deterrent effect in 


treating the defendant as a defective or inferior 
individual who may not safely be permitted to 
mingle with his fellows unless cured than in treat- 
ing him as a desperado to be caged. This fact has 
been demonstrated by what I have called the experi- 
ment, now a proved success, in the indeterminate 
sentence to the penitentiary. The experience of 
the judges in New York City has been that the inde- 
terminate sentence has proved the most effective 
deterrent yet devised. 

When I was in Pittsburg in January, 1917, I was 
informed by the warden of the County Jail that 
since the passage of the indeterminate sentence 
law in New York State large numbers of pickpockets 
who would have been subject to that sentence had 
come from New York City to ply their trade in Pitts- 
burg, and the decrease in the number of those charged 
with larceny from the person in New York City has 
been noticeable. The indeterminate sentence is an 
effective deterrent for the reasons : first, the defendant 
knows that he has no chance to obtain a light sen- 
tence, since the sentence is alike no matter who is 
the judge, and the defendant always has to run the 
risk of being held the maximum term, his earlier 
release depending upon genuine guarantees that he 
can make good and will make good when released; 
and, second, when released, the defendant comes 
out on parole, and if he fails to make good must 
return and may be held for the remainder of his 
term. The indeterminate sentence, therefore, makes 
for uniformity of sentence and is also a great stimulus 
to the offender to correct his ways and make good. 


Through classification the incapable may be 
cared for ; through preparation those who are capa- 
ble may be fitted for honest and useful lives; 
through the indeterminate sentence release may be 
granted when the capable are ready to be returned 
to society. By these means society will be better 
protected against the commission of crime. ^ 



Director, Psychiatric Clinic, Sing Sing Prison 


Medical Director, National Committee for Mental Hygiene 



THE relation of the prisoner to the various agencies 
with which he comes in contact during his intra- 
mural career are ably discussed by the several con- 
tributors to this volume. There remains for consid- 
eration another important relationship, that is, the 
relationship of the prisoner to himself. To one who v 
subscribes to the theory of absolute psychic deter- 
minism, to the belief that nothing in life happens 
fortuitously, but is the result of antecedent factors, 
the discussion of the latter relationship at once as- 
sumes a leading place in a book dealing with the 
prisoner. The ultimate success of any remedial 
agencies that may be applied to this problem depends 
in the first place upon a proper acquaintance with 
causative factors. The writer, of course, assumes 
that we are all in agreement concerning the function 
of a modern system of penology, namely : that it is v 
primarily intended to be remedial, reconstructive, 
reformative, and not purely punitive in its aims.' 

Society has, at all times, endeavored to formulate 
conceptions regarding causative factors of crime, 
some of which, though born in the infancy of the race, 
are still adhered to tenaciously by a large portion of 



mankind. These notions concerning the causation 
of criminal behavior naturally suggested certain 
remedies which society has been assidupusly applying 
in its effort to cure itself of this evil. How effective, V 
or more correctly how ineffective, these remedies 
have been is common knowledge. But contrary to 
the prevailing belief, one is tempted to venture the 
suggestion that the fault does not lie entirely with the 
remedy, but that it is the promiscuous, unintelligent, 
blind manner of its administration that has had a 
great deal to do with its inefficiency. What would 
one think, for instance, of a modern hospital where 
all the patients were to receive the same medicine, 
the only variation being in the amount administered 
or in the length of time that a given patient is sub- 
jected to the treatment. And yet, we are doing just * 
this very thing in promiscuously sending all offenders 
against society to prisons, where no attempt is made 
at individualization, either in the application of the 
punitive phase of prison administration or in its re- 
formative phase. Those who have given attention 
to this problem are quite convinced that Healy's 
dictum that the problem of delinquency will ever 
remain a problem of the individual delinquent is a 
correct one. There are very few phenomena common 
to all offenders, even to all chronic offenders. There 
are very few factors which are wholly responsible 
for the criminality of all chronic offenders, or even 
for the criminality of a large majority of them. And 
yet, we persist in our endeavors to fit all these 
extremely varying units into a uniform system of 
penology or reformation. 


We cannot hope to succeed in any effort towards " 
reformation if we do not start out with the convic- 
tion that human beings vary within very wide limits 
in their susceptibility to correction or reformation; 
that some individuals, because of their psychological 
make-up, either qualitative or quantitative, are 
absolutely or permanently incorrigible and have to 
be dealt with in only one way, and that is permanent 
segregation and isolation from society 1 If there is 
a single phenomenon which is common to all careers 
of chronic, antisocial behavior, it is this : The chronic 
offender against society has, for one reason or an- 
other, never succeedecTin adequately "differartratitig 
himself from the environment in which he is obliged 
to live, an absbititeessentiaMiriEe Devolution from 
savagery to civilization. Thus, on the one hand, 
he, has failed to develop a .dear conr.ept.ion . oLprop- 
ert^ngljis; while on the other hand, he lacks the 
appreciation of and respect for 1.1 m )ii-rn f]| , in frf 
individual, of the laws and prescriptions which 
society has imposed upon its members for the regu- 
lation of their conduct. Now, there are many 
reasons why an individual may have failfidla. attain 
this differentiation, but whatever these reasons are, 
it cannot be denied that failure in this respect forms 
the greatest and most important debit, which it 
should be our aim to equalize by adequate credits 
during the individual's sojourn in a penal institution. 
Any attempt in this direction means intense speciali- 
zation, and it is this recognition of the need for spe- 
cialization that has prompted the establishment of 
the Reception Prison. 


Starting out with the conception that an individual 
whom society has elected to isolate from its midst 
for a certain perioct of time and confine within a cer- 
tain specialized environment labors under the burden 
of a deficiency, of a debit which has caused his iso- 
lation, it should be the function of the Reception 
Prison to first make possible an accurate delineation 
of that debit, and second to outline the type of 
credits that would tend to equalize it. Thus, the 
primary function of the Reception Prison is the in- 
tensive study of the individual so that a proper esti- 
mate of his personality may be gained, and to exert 
its influence through the various reconstructive 
methods which are at present at hand or may be 
introduced in the future with the view of bringing 
about a proper adaptation, or a proper coordi- 
nation between the individual prisoner and these 
agencies. , 

Doctor Salmon will discuss the administration of 
the Reception Prison and the methods of operation 
as devised by experts in the allied fields of medicine 
and psychiatry. ^ I will only say in passing that to 
the psychiatrist it seems that too little attention has 
been paid in the past to those instinctive and un- 
conscious forces which are operative in the control 
and direction of human conduct. More attention 
should likewise be paid to antenatal determinants, 
more especially to those traits of character which are 
dominant in the lives of the antecedents, both indi- 
vidual and racial. The life of the mother and the 
influences under which she was obliged to live during 
the period of gestation, the story of the birth, of in- 


fancy and childhood, all of these deserve special at- 
tention. The succeeding period, which embraces 
perhaps the most important epoch in an individual's 
life, namely, the epoch of the emancipation of the 
individual from his parental bonds, should consti- 
tute a very interesting subject of study. Next, 
school and occupational career, and the evolution 
of the conscious sex life of the individual, are of great 
importance. A due amount of interest should be 
accorded to extrinsic insults to which the individual 
may have been subjected and which may have had 
an influence in determining his career of crime. 
There can be no doubt that during the early stages 
of the evolution of a psychosis, there are many 
possibilities of going astray in the line of antisocial 
behavior at any rate, this is being illustrated to a 
rather surprising extent in our work at Sing Sing. 
Then comes the period of decline, of loss of efficiency, 
of the endeavor to compensate for powers and abili- 
ties that one feels slipping away from under his con- 
trol, which endeavors sometimes express themselves 
in antisocial behavior. The importance of the field 
investigation of a great part of the life history of 
the individual should not be overlooked. Detailed, 
comprehensive study of the individual, such as has 
been outlined above, cannot help but furnish us with 
a dependable estimate of the human being before us, 
and must naturally aid us very materially in out- 
lining a course of procedure necessary for bringing 
about an adequate, socially acceptable balance. 

What is to be done, after such estimate has been 
reached, cannot be outlined in detail. The variations 


are bound to be so extensive and the nature of the 
reconstructive agencies so protean as to make it im- 
possible to start out with a well-formulated outline. 
One thing is true, that whatever agencies there may 
be at hand, these should be directed towards bringing 
about a proper adjustment between the individual 
and the environment. Certain activities in an in- 
dustrial way, in a vocational way, in a purely educa- 
tional way suggest themselves, but only as general- 
ities. The ultimate application of these activities 
must, in the final analysis, be determined by the 
individual who is to benefit from them. Were it 
not for the fact that one cannot escape a great deal 
of blatant criticism at the hands of penologists of 
the older order of things, we would not stop here 
even to mention the fact that in this proposed scheme 
too much emphasis is being laid on the individual 
and too little on society's share in a penal system. 
But there is only one answer to this, and that is that 
society can ultimately only benefit by applying its 
efforts toward reconstructing the individual offender, 
that its benefits can only be proportionate to the 
benefits in the evolution of the personality which will 
accrue to the prisoner as a result of his sojourn in 
a penal institution. So much for the internal ad- 
ministration of the Receiving Station. 

There is one other activity to which such an 
institution would admirably lend itself, and that is 
its association with an outside educational insti- 
tution. One does not have to argue extensively that 
the place to study the criminal and the place to 
acquire knowledge concerning the subject of anti- 


social behavior is the prison. No amount of abstract 
discussion of crime and punishment, of original sin 
or more concrete causes of antisocial behavior will 
ever bring us any nearer to the solution of the problem 
before us. Crime cannot exist apart from the crimi- 
nal, and it is the criminal as a human being, acting, 
feeling, and willing, who must teach us the nature, 
the causes, and the cure of criminal behavior. A 
Reception Prison, such as is planned for the prison 
system of the State of New York, could articulate in 
many ways with an educational institution. First, 
it could offer to such an institution an admirable 
course in clinical criminology. Second, it could offer 
a very fertile field for research on the basis of fellow- 
ships to be carried on in conjunction with work at 
the university. Third, it could avail itself of the 
affiliation with the university to bring into the prison 
such extension courses as may be of benefit in carry- 
ing out the reconstructive aims of the prison. Such, 
in brief, is a general survey of the work that it is 
planned to carry out at Sing Sing, and which it is 
hoped can be suggestive to institutions throughout 
the country. 


The general principles which underlie the effort 
to determine the relationship of the prisoner to him- 
self have been outlined by Doctor Glueck. It is there- 
fore fitting to discuss some of the specific methods 
which are being put into operation at the experi- 
mental station established at Sing Sing Prison, which 
is to serve as the clearing house for the prisoners of 


New York State and to which will eventually be sent 
all such prisoners at the time of their commitment. 

The plan of utilizing Sing Sing as a Reception 
Prison was first promulgated by the New York State 
Commission on Prison Reform in its preliminary 
report published in 1914. The Commission recom- 
mended that the Sing Sing site should be abandoned 
as a prison, and that to it all prisoners sentenced in 
New York State should be sent for medical examina- 
tion, observation, and for study of their character 
and aptitude, before being disposed of in pursuance 
of the sentence of the court. 

The proposition passed through a period of dis- 
cussion to its recognition in the law of 1916 which 
provided for a new Sing Sing prison and the con- 
version of old Sing Sing into a scientific receiving 
station. Psychiatrical and medical experts have 
already taken up their abode at Sing Sing. Even 
amid the dingy surroundings of old Sing Sing an ex- 
cellent hospital and laboratory have been established, 
and the first reports of work accomplished can be 
expected shortly. 

A preliminary plan for the psychiatrical work in 
a Reception Prison such as that suggested for Sing 
Sing was made during the summer of 1915 by Doctor 
George H. Kirby and Doctor L. Pierce Clark of New 
York City. Their recommendations have formed 
the basis for the organization of the Psychiatric 
clinic now in operation. Doctor Kirby and Doctor 
Clark recommend the investigation of a year's ad- 
missions, and, in addition, a careful mental study of 
at least three other groups among the prison popula- 


tion : (1) refractory and incorrigible cases : (2) pris- 
oners convicted for or suspected of sexual perver- 
sions : (3) all prisoners who develop symptoms of 
mental or nervous disorder or exhibit suicidal im- 
pulses or. seem to be mentally defective. 

The psychiatric investigation of the groups men- 
tioned, they suggested, should aim to include the 
following for each case : 

(a) Family history and heredity. 

(6) Early development and later life history of the 
individual in detail. As complete an analysis of 
the personality or mental make-up as is possible for 
the purpose of establishing correlations between the 
criminal situation and the various internal (psy- 
chogenic) and external (environmental) factors oper- 
ative in each case. 

(c) Mental status of the prisoner : attitude and 
conduct in prison and reaction to confinement : de- 
termination of intellectual level and mental capacity 
for appropriate tests for f eeble-mindedness, educa- 
tional acquirements, etc. : symptoms of mental 
disorder with careful investigation of unusual emo- 

X^s^ -___^ i"^* ^ ^^""^ "^ 

tional reactions and peculiar-trend of ideas : special 
study of the criminal situation (subjective analysis) 
with efforts to get at the deeper motives underlying 
various criminal tendencies. 

(d) Physical examination : abnormalities of physi- 
cal make-up (stigmata) : general bodily condition, 
signs of specific and other diseases : neurological ex- 
amination sufficient to detect any disorder of nervous 
system. Wassermann blood test in each case, lumbar 
puncture when indicated or necessary for diagnosis. 


These recommendations have been embodied in 
the plan for the work already under way at Sing Sing, 
and the writer wishes to emphasize that no one phase 
of the work constitutes an independent unit but is 
a coordinate part of a comprehensive scheme. 

Medical Examination 

The .plan for dealing with the medical phases of the 
problem has followed the principles which have led 
to success in solving the problems of our profession. 
Not many years ago we used to talk of "the sick" 
and it was believed that, in providing a hospital, the 
community had done its duty by those who belong 
to this class. That conception has long since disap- 
peared, and we provide now for the diagnosis and 
treatment of many kinds of sick persons in many 
different kinds of hospitals. This practice we are 
now carrying over to the prisons, though its opera- 
tion will to a certain extent be retarded by the lack 
of institutions where certain groups can receive 
adequate care. 

General Features 

RECEPTION OF PRISONERS. Each prisoner, in 
order that the study may be effectively conducted, 
ought to serve a so-called probationary period in the 
receiving station of at least three months, during 
which time enough information will have been gained 
concerning his personality and aptitudes to justify 
the recommendation of a line of procedure for the 
remainder of his imprisonment. 

MEDICAL CLINIC. As soon as practicable after 


the arrival of the prisoner he will be presented at 
the medical clinic. Here he will be subjected to a 
most critical physical and mental examination. In 
such an examination the immediately practical ques- 
tion of general physical condition and the presence of 
contagious or infectious diseases will first receive 
attention but, in the course of two or three days at 
the most, and possibly half a day at the least, a com- 
plete examination will be made which will include 
careful anthropological measurements, estimate of 
nutrition, detection of defects and anomalies in 
growth and the determinative integrity of all the 
different organs. 

Affections requiring treatment and defects capable 
of remedy will receive special attention in this exam- 
ination. Every clinical facility will be used in this 
preliminary examination, the laboratory test made 
in each case, including at least the Wassermann test, 
the tuberculin test, and complement fixation test for 
gonorrhea. The records of this examination will be 
very carefully made and preserved. 

examination having been carefully performed, cer- 
tain immediate issues will have to be dealt with. 
All prisoners physically ill with acute or chronic dis- 
eases will be sent to the general hospital for treat- 
ment, except in the case of minor conditions which 
can be as effectively treated in the surgical and medi- 
cal dispensaries. The condition of the teeth of each 
individual will be carefully noted and treatment in 
the dental dispensary commenced in each case in 
which defects are shown to exist. 


In mental conditions, if the diagnosis can be made 
by examinations conducted in the clinic building, 
admission to the psychopathic pavilion will not be 
necessary. In all cases, however, in which observa- 
tion is desirable in order to determine the condition, 
or in which treatment is required pending transfer 
to an appropriate institution, the prisoner will be 
cared for in this pavilion. 

All cases of venereal disease will be treated in the 
venereal pavilion. This applies to gonorrhea as well 
as to syphilis, the object of treatment being not 
only the earliest possible complete cure of the 
prisoner but elimination of the possibility of infecting 

When, after active treatment, cases of syphilis 
give negative Wassermann reactions, transfer may 
be made to one of the different groups of prisoners 
at Sing Sing and from these groups to the other 
State prisons for which Sing Sing is intended to con- 
stitute the distributing center. 

Prisoners who have tuberculosis will be immedi- 
ately admitted to the general hospital and kept there 
continuously until their transfer to the hospital for 
tubercular prisoners at Dannemora is effected. It 
is suggested that pavilions for such cases can be con- 
structed on the roof of the hospital building. 

All prisoners with incurable diseases or those re- 
quiring continued treatment will be kept at the 
general hospital. Those in whom partial infirmity 
not requiring continued hospital treatment exists 
will be transferred to the "special group" which will 
be mentioned later. 


The medical work outlined thus far will make it 
possible to pass on to the "normal group" or to the 
" special group" in Sing Sing only prisoners whose 
mental and physical condition has been exactly de- 
termined and who have been treated continuously 
for whatever disease they may possess. The insane, 
the tubercular, those with severe grades of mental 
defect and those with chronic or incurable diseases 
will not leave the hospital department except through 
transfer to more suitable institutions, the expiration 
of their sentence, parole, or pardon. 

Normal Group 

The normal group, doubtless, will be made up of 
prisoners found to be free from physical or mental 
defect or conditions requiring treatment. It is 
understood that the period of residence of such pris- 
oners will be short, all of them being transferred to 
other prisons after a period of preliminary training. 

Special Group 

The establishment of a "special group" of pris- 
oners is believed to constitute the most important 
constructive feature of the plan proposed. The 
principal constituents of this group may be briefly 
mentioned, and then a few suggestions made as to 
their management and disposition. 

FEEBLE-MINDED. There exists no institution in 
the State at the present time for feeble-minded 
prisoners other than those whose mental grade is 
so low that they are likely to be detected before 
conviction and committed to the Matteawan State 


Hospital. Until a suitable institution for this type 
of cases can be provided, Matteawan State Hospital 
will probably continue to be used, although an un- 
suitable place for their detention. The higher grade 
classes can be cared for in the "special group" which 
it is proposed to establish until more suitable provi- 
sions are made in institutions for defective delin- 
quents. In this group they can receive industrial 
training devised to fit their individual needs, such 
carefully supervised education as will be of the most 
practical benefit and special management with refer- 
ence to conduct and responsibility. Such groups 
have been successfully established in reformatories. 
In other words, the management of mentally defec- 
tive prisoners in the "special groups" will approxi- 
mate that existing in an institution for high-grade 
cases of feeble-mindedness. 

SPECIAL MENTAL CASES. All individuals in whom 
insanity (mental diseases or psychoses) exists will 
be transferred as soon as practicable to the Mattea- 
wan State Hospital. Without mental examination 
and under a system which brought mental cases to 
the attention of the physician only when they at 
first came to the notice of lay employees, about one 
in forty-five of the average daily population of Sing 
Sing Prison has been committed to the Matteawan 
State Hospital each year during the last three years. 
The ratio of commitments to the adult male popula- 
tion of the entire State is only one in 320. It is ap- 
parent, therefore, that we will have to deal with a 
very heavy incidence of mental disease among those 
received at Sing Sing. It is impossible to predict 


the number of such cases which will be found after a 
careful psychiatric examination is made of all prison- 
ers, but the experience of those few prisons in which 
such examinations have been conducted makes it 
certain that it will be several times greater than the 
proportion given. It is an obvious duty of the 
State to provide increased accommodations for such 
patients in the hospitals for the criminal insane. 

The mental cases to be provided for in the "special 
group" will not, therefore, be those of frank mental 
disease. There is, in addition, however, a consider- 
able proportion of prisoners in whom various psycho- 
pathic types of personality exist. It is felt that 
prolonged observation of these prisoners and special 
methods of management and care will not only bene- 
fit many of them individually but will remove from 
the prison population a small but important group 
in whom reformative measures applicable to the 
general prison population are likely to fail. 

SEXUAL PSYCHOPATHICS. In this group of prison- 
ers are included those with various types of sexual 
inversions or perversions. Not a few of these prison- 
ers will be found capable of much improvement by 
treatment, although most of them are not proper 
subjects for treatment in an institution for the insane 
or one for the mentally defective. Their collection in 
the "special group" where special oversight is to be at 
all times possible will help solve one of the most diffi- 
cult problems which confront prison administrators. 

INFIRM AND CRIPPLED. A small proportion of the 
prisoners admitted to the Reception Prison will be 
found to be unimprovable by hospital treatment and 


incapable of any except slight physical labor. In 
the "special group" such cases can be provided with 
a very suitable environment, and their industrial 
training can be modified with special reference to 
their needs and abilities. 

In addition to the members of the "special group" 
which have been indicated, any prisoner presenting 
a problem which, either for his advantage or for the 
advantage of the prison, requires highly individual- 
ized treatment should be added to this "special 
group." In this way those presenting striking 
anomalies of conduct, unusual personalities, etc!, 
will receive the special attention which they require. 

The Mental and Sociological Study 

The mental and sociological study will follow the 
general lines suggested by Doctor Kirby and Doctor 
Clark. The accurate diagnosis will come, however, 
as the result of the man's participation, under ob- 
servation, in the community life of the institution 
and will grow out of it, being modified by it, rather 
than being arbitrarily made by an external labora- 
tory. Psychological, mechanical, and other tests 
will be used, the cooperation of the field worker will 
be enlisted, but the receiving station itself will con- 
stitute the laboratory. 

It is no easy task to obtain a personal, industrial, 
and sociological history of an adult delinquent who 
may have served several sentences under different 
names and have become expert in avoiding the sur- 
render of such information, even when confronted 
by expert prosecutors and third degree examiners. 


The success or failure of the receiving station will 
be determined by the attitude of the prisoners. 
Even at Sing Sing where the Mutual Welfare System 
is developing in the prisoners a determination to help 
in every way, the old habit of suppression of facts still 
partially persists. Accurate information can only 
be called out when it is apparent that the informa- 
tion will not be used against the man in his future 
career, and where there will be a direct profit to him 
from revealing the facts. 

Reliable information can only be gained through 
the establishment of the best kind of personal rela- 
tionships between the prisoners and the investigators 
and through the gradual demonstration of the fact 
that the release of information will better a man's 
opportunity in the institution and secure adequate 
recognition before the Parole Board or Indeterminate 
Sentence Board. 

Buildings Required 

The buildings required to carry out the plan herein 
proposed include a medical clinic building, general 
hospital, psychopathic pavilion, venereal pavilion 
and isolation pavilion. The attached estimate gives 
the approximate cost of such buildings. 

MEDICAL CLINIC BUILDING. This building should 
provide the following examining rooms : laboratory ; 
physical examination, special ; physical examination, 
eye, ear, nose, and throat; physical examination, 
general ; office of chief physician ; office of medical 
clerk ; psychopathic examination room ; record room 
and library ; surgical dispensary ; drug room ; medical 


dispensary ; dental dispensary ; psychopathic labora- 
tory ; toilet rooms ; and storage space in attics. The 
records of the medical department will be of great and 
increasing value, and so arrangements will be made 
for their storage in fireproof filing cabinets. The 
general offices of the physician and his associates will 
be located in this building, and it will be the center 
of the hygienic, sanitary, and medical activities of 
the prison. The library will form a place for staff 
conferences and for research, as well as for the safe 
keeping of records. The morgue will be in the base- 
ment of the medical clinic building directly connect- 
ing with the laboratory. It is believed that a plain 
but substantial building providing all the facilities 
needed can be constructed for the amount estimated. 

GENERAL HOSPITAL. The general hospital will 
provide for fifty patients, one side being devoted to 
surgical and the other to medical cases. In the 
center portion between the two wings will be situated 
the operating, dressing, and sterilizing rooms, the 
X-ray and photographic room, and quarters for the 
resident physician and nurses. A two-story brick 
building of plain but substantial construction (fol- 
lowing the excellent type adopted by the United 
States Army) could be constructed for the amount 

vilion will provide for fifteen patients, ten of them 
in individual rooms and five in a small ward. A 
day room and a room provided with complete hydro- 
therapeutic apparatus will be included, together 
with the necessary service rooms. 



Buildings Required by the Medical Department 






For Medical and Surgical cases and 
tuberculosis pending transfer to hos- 
pital for insane 


For special mental observation and 
treatment pending transfer 


For contagious diseases other than 
tuberculosis and venereal 


For active cases of venereal disease 


Offices and record rooms of medical 
General physical 
Eye, ear, nose, and throat 

General medical 












Kitchen service (except diet kitchen) for General Hospital and 
Psychopathic Pavilion to be from main service department of prison. 
Independent kitchen service for Venereal Pavilion and Isolation Pavilion. 

VENEREAL PAVILION. The venereal pavilion, to 
accommodate thirty patients, will consist of two 
wards accommodating twelve patients each, six isola- 


tion rooms, and the necessary service rooms. A dress- 
ing room and small ward laboratory will also be 
provided. The kitchen and dining-room service of 
this building will be independent. 

ISOLATION PAVILION. The isolation pavilion will 
consist of five separate rooms, each with a water 
section, so that cases of different contagious diseases 
can be isolated at the same time. This building will 
probably rarely be occupied, but it is an indispen- 
sable adjunct of an institution of this size, no matter 
what its purposes may be. 


Thus far the plan has dealt only with general pro- 
cedure and physical facilities. All these might be 
provided, and the great problems which it is proposed 
to attack remain unsolved unless an adequate per- 
sonnel is also supplied. 

PHYSICIAN. Under this title, by which the chief 
medical officer of a prison is officially known, there 
will be appointed to the Reception Prison a man 
qualified by scientific training, experience, character, 
breadth of vision, and personal qualities to direct 
and coordinate all the activities which have been 
suggested. He will be in effect, if not in official 
terms, the chief sanitary officer of the prison and in 
all matters will report directly to the warden. All 
other persons, both officers and employees, in the 
medical department should report directly to him. 

ASSISTANT PHYSICIANS. One assistant physician 
will be assigned constantly to the general hospital, 
one to the medical clinic building, and one as a gen- 


eral assistant, devoting himself chiefly to the care of 
patients in the venereal pavilion. At least two of 
the assistant physicians will reside in the prison. 

ALIENISTS. An alienist and his assistant will, 
under the chief medical officer, have charge of the 
psychopathic pavilion and the mental examinations 
at the medical clinic. They will also, in cooperation 
with other prison officials, supervise the care and 
training of the mentally defective and other mental 
cases in the "special group." The assistant alienist 
will reside in the prison. 

DENTIST. There will be a nonresident dentist 
who will be required to devote his whole time to the 
work of the dental dispensary. 

MEDICAL CLERK. The medical clerk will have 
had practical experience in the care of medical records 
in a large general hospital. He will have, under the 
chief medical officer, full responsibility for the medical 
records of the prison. 

LABORATORY ASSISTANT. As it is hoped that it 
will not be necessary to make the extensive provision 
necessary for laboratory examinations at Sing Sing, 
the duties of the laboratory assistant will deal with 
the routine examination of blood, sputum, and urine, 
and the preparation of specimens to be submitted for 
examination elsewhere. It is believed that the State 
Health Department and one of the medical schools 
in New York City will cooperate by providing the 
extensive laboratory which will have to form a part 
of the examination and treatment at Sing Sing. 

NURSES. There will be a supervisor of nurses. 
All the nurses employed in the psychopathic pavilion, 


and the head nurses in the general hospital and in the 
venereal pavilion will be paid employees of the State. 

SOCIAL WORKERS. One or two field workers (non- 
medical) will be required to assist in getting family 
and personal histories of the cases. 

STENOGRAPHERS. A stenographer will be em- 
ployed for the chief medical officer and one for the 
psychopathic pavilion. 

Transfer of Prisoners 

very essential to bear in mind that the establishment 
of the "special group" which has been described does 
not involve a rigid or permanent division. There 
will be free transfer from the "special group" to the 
"normal group" when there is a fortunate outcome 
to efforts at specialized training ; from the "normal" 
to the "special group" when the test of prison social 
life discloses abnormal conditions not previously as- 
certained, and to and from the hospital as exigencies 
require. At all times the hospital and medical clinic 
building will serve the medical needs of the prison 

objects of the plan herein proposed will be to supply 
to the other prisons a stream of healthy, sane, able- 
bodied prisoners who have received the benefits of 
preliminary training, have had physical defects cor- 
rected, and have already entered into the spirit of 
self-government upon which the success of their 
future lives, both in and out of prison, will chiefly 


In consequence of the retention at the Reception 
Prison of the sick, the defective, and those requir- 
ing special care, the problems of other prisons will 
be immensely simplified. Hospital accommoda- 
tions will be restricted to those required for emer- 
gency cases, and each prisoner will have definite in- 
dustrial capacities. Thus the greater expense of 
maintenance in the Reception Prison will be offset by 
the saving in other prisons due to the highly selected 
type of prisoners with which they will be supplied. 

When a prisoner becomes seriously or chronically 
ill in another prison, or is in need of reexamination 
or special observation to determine his mental or 
physical condition, he will be returned to the Recep- 
tion Prison at which all scientific facilities will be 
concentrated. At the time of discharge, each 
prisoner will be returned to Sing Sing where he will 
be very carefully reexamined. In this way it will be 
possible to determine what prison life under favor- 
able conditions actually does for the prisoner. Its 
effects upon him mentally and physically, as well as 
morally, can be ascertained, while if such a prisoner 
is readmitted to Sing Sing it will be possible to learn 
also what the effects of community life have been. 

The Reception Prison, the functions of which have 
been briefly reviewed, is the latest development in 
the field of scientific penology, and so far as the ap- 
plication of medical and psychiatrical information 
can help, should both test the real utility of the prison 
system and devise the means whereby ineffectiveness 
can be overcome and reconstructive measures be 
made available for each individual prisoner. 


Of the New York Bar 


"THIS nation cannot continue half slave and half 
free" was the doctrine of Lincoln and written through 
the bloodshed of the Civil War into our Consti- 
tution. Yet one segment of our population was 
seemingly not included in the sweeping declaration ; 
the segment that behind prison walls is paying the 
penalty for the perpetration of crime. 

The Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution ~ 
of the United States holds "that neither slavery nor 
involuntary servitude, except as a punishment 
for crime, whereof the party shall have been duly 
convicted, shall exist within the United States or 
any place subject to their jurisdiction." By in- 
ference at least this amendment can be read to sanc- 
tion slavery, as well as involuntary servitude, as 
punishment for crime.^ 

Slavery or involuntary servitude as punishment 
for crime is not limited to this country nor to this 
day and generation. It is a survival from next-to- 
primitive days. The earliest form of punishment 
was death or expulsion from the family or tribe, but 
as soon as the tribe gathered unto itself goods and 
chattels, the evildoers, like the prisoners of war, 
were held as captives to perform the menial duties. 



This continued through Roman days in the servi 
poena who labored in building the great Roman 
highways and manned the galleys, to the feudal days 
when resort to the hangman was found less costly. 

The beginning of the eighteenth century wit- 
nessed revulsion from the hangman's methods and 
also a demand for laborers for the colonies ; deporta- 
tion into slavery resulted as substitute for the hang- 
man. In brief, as Doctor Whitin has analyzed 
the situation, "The economic value of the labor of 
the wayward individual has directly affected the 
method of his punishment." 1 

The upheaval of the French Revolution has left 
its mark on the treatment of the French convicts. 
Since the fall of the Bastile, wage for their labors 
has been granted not as a privilege but as a right. 
Thus was one element of slavery swept from the 
lot of the French convict by that great holocaust ! 2 

In this country, as in England and Germany, wage 
has never been deemed the right of the convict. 
It has been granted at times for overtime work or 
to stimulate activity and lead to increase in the out- 
put, but never has the right to wage been established. 
It has been urged before legislatures, discussed by 
reform gatherings, and preached from pulpits. 
To-day we have labor without compensation in 
practically every prison in this land. 

Is this tolerated because the Constitution may 
be construed to permit slavery as punishment for 
crime? Does the lack of wage constitute a slave 

1 "Penal Servitude", E. Stagg Whitin, C. I. 

2 "Le Travail dans les Prisons", Roger Roux, p. 31. 


status, or, taken in conjunction with other elements 
in the convict's lot, does it create a condition of 
slavery ? Is the status of the convict slavery, servi- 
tude analogous to slavery, or totally different there- 
from ? 

The exact status of the prisoner in this respect 
has never been fully defined by the courts, though 
an interesting legal problem is involved and the 
decision might have far-reaching effect. Should it 
be held that slavery is actually imposed as punish- 
ment for crime, would our modern conscience tolerate 
its continuance ? Would not a readjustment of our 
whole prison system follow such a decision ? 

The National Committee on Prisons and Prison 
Labor decided to bring the matter before the 
courts, and in 1913 instituted a test case in Rhode 
Island, the constitution of which prohibits slavery 
without mention of involuntary servitude and with- 
out the exception as to punishment for crime found 
in the federal and most of the State constitutions. 

The Rhode Island State Board of Control has full 
power and authority over the labor of prisoners 
and other inmates of State institutions and is em- 
powered "to sell the products of such institutions 
and make such contracts respecting the labor of 
the prisoners and inmates as it shall deem proper." 
The statute which authorizes the contracting of 
the labor of the prisoners provides further that "all 
orders, agreements and contracts made by said 
board in respect to such labor shall be binding upon 
the prisoners and inmates." l 

1 Rhode Island Public Laws, 1912, c. 825, 21. 


A contract was entered into December 24, 1912, 
between the Rhode Island Board of Control and the 
Crescent Garment Company, under which the lat- 
ter hired the labor of not less than 250 prisoners, 
furnishing the necessary machinery, material and 
supervision to keep all these convicts employed, 
and paying the State fifty cents for every dozen 
shirts manufactured under the agreement. The 
Board of Control agreed to furnish all the factory 
room, power, heat, and light necessary for the proper 
conduct and operation of the manufacture and all 
the transportation of materials, supplies, and manu- 
factured articles from and to the railroad station. 

The status of the prisoner forced to work under 
the terms of this contract was considered by the 
National Committee on Prisons and Prison Labor 
to possess all the essential attributes of slavery, 
and the statute authorizing the contract to be in 
contravention to the provision of the State Consti- 
tution prohibiting slavery. 

The Committee therefore backed an ex-prisoner 
who brought suit against the former and the present 
contractors for wage for his labor during the time 
he had worked under their contracts. 1 

The case was heard before the Supreme Court 
of Rhode Island in November, 1914. George Gor- 
don Battle, the counsel for the plaintiff, argued that 
the Rhode Island constitution is self-executing and 
applies equally to negroes and white persons and 
established the fact that the framers of the con- 

1 State of Rhode Island, Anderson and Crescent Garment Company, 
Supreme Court, C.Q. No. 455. 


stitution were too familiar with the discourses on 
slavery, 1 to have intended that the word "slavery" 
should be restricted to "African Slavery": or in 
other words that it is inconceivable that the people 
of Rhode Island when they enacted the Constitu- 
tion, would be willing to do less than was accom- 
plished by the Thirteenth Amendment or permit 
any form of human bondage to flourish within the 
borders of the State. Furthermore, the Rhode 
Island fathers must have known that Illinois, In- 
diana, Michigan and Ohio had enacted anti-slavery 
clauses at a much earlier date, yet all modified the 
prohibition by the exception as to punishment for 
crime. The people of Rhode Island too could have 
included the exception, but their language is clear and 
final. They prohibited slavery slavery in every 
form, under any guise whatsoever. 

The definition of slavery, advanced by Mr. Battle 
as the most careful and accurate to be found in the 
books, was that laid down in Plessy v. Ferguson : 2 
"Slavery implies involuntary servitude a state 
of bondage ; the ownership of mankind as a chattel, 
or at least the control of the labor and services of 
one man for the benefit of another, and the absence 
of a legal right to the disposal of his own person, 
property and services." 

According to this definition the elements of slav- 
ery are: (1) The control of the labor and services 
of a person, (2) for the benefit of another and (3) 
the absence of a legal right in the former to dispose 
of his own person, property and services. 

1 Kent's Commentaries appeared in 1827 and was undoubtedly familiar 
to all the lawyers who took part in the framing of that agreement. In 
his thirty-second lecture (p. 247, et seq.) Chancellor Kent gives a full 
discourse on slavery, Greek, Roman, feudal, etc. 

2 Plessy v. Ferguson, 163 U. S. 537, p. 542. 


Under the contract, it was pointed out, the ser- 
vices of the plaintiff were controlled directly by the 
contractor ; the benefit or profit from these services 
accrued to the contractor, subject to the fixed pay- 
ments to the state, the plaintiff being entitled to 
no benefit from these services ; and, moreover, the 
plaintiff was without legal right, under the contract 
to dispose of his own person, property or services, 
either by working for the state, some other contrac- 
tor, or himself, or by not working at all. As to his 
person and services this is clear. His right to the 
disposal of his property was equally non-existent; 
a convict may not make a will or any conveyance 
of his property or any part thereof during his im- 
prisonment. 1 

The lack of a right to compensation was an 
essential characteristic of slavery as it existed before 
the Civil War. The prisoner, it was shown, might 
receive compensation at the will of the Board of 
Control ; so might the slave in the South be per- 
mitted by his master to receive wages as his own 
property. 2 Slaves in Louisiana had a legal right 
to wages for work done on Sunday, even against 
their masters, while an early South Carolina case 
upheld the right of a slave as against her master, 
to retain wages which he had permitted her to ac- 
quire and keep as her own. 

In spite of this apparent exception, however, 
the absence of a legal right to demand compensation 
for work involuntarily done may be described as 
an infallible attribute of slavery. 

iKenyon v. Saunders, 18 R. I. 590, 592; Public Statutes of R. I., 
c. 248, 52. 

2 Guardian of Sally v. Beaty (S. C.), 1 Bay 260 ; Rice v. Cade, 10 La. 
288, 294. 


The fact that the plaintiff's term of confinement 
and compulsory service terminated at a fixed date 
was shown not inconsistent with the status of slav- 
ery. In at least one state the negro was recognized 
as a slave even though he had a definite right to 
freedom at some future date. 1 

The power to contract was not entirely withheld 
from the negro slave. In Louisiana and Tennessee, 
contracts between slaves and their masters whereby 
the master agreed to free the slave on a future date, 
or on the payment of a certain sum, were valid and 
enforceable. 2 Similarly, in certain jurisdictions, ne- 
gro slaves were capable of entering into valid con- 
tracts of marriage. In Tennessee this was permitted 
at common law, if done with the master's consent, 
and also by early statutes in New York and Massa- 
chusetts. 3 

The status of the convict was not essentially 
different from that of a slave even in the mat- 
ter of protection from brutality. The protection of 
the convict is only secured through the constitu- 
tional prohibition against cruel punishment, and by 
a statute forbidding whipping or other corporal 
punishment except under the direction of two mem- 
bers of the State Board. 4 

The Southern slave owner did not have absolute 
power over the person of his slave : for mere dis- 
obedience he was entitled to administer only such 
punishment as was appropriate to the case without 

1 Jameson v. McCoy (Term.), 5 Heisk 108. 

2 Gaudet v. Gourdain, 3 La. Ann. 136. 

3 Andrews v. Page (Tenn.), 3 Heisk. 635, 668. Oliver v. Sale (Mass.), 
Quincy 29 Note. Jackson v. Lervey (N. Y.), 5 Cow. 397. 

4 General Laws, 1909, p. 1337, 23. 


endangering the life or limb of his slave. The slave 
might lawfully resist his master in defense of life 
or limb ; and if the master killed him in the ensuing 
conflict, it was murder. 1 There is nothing in the 
statutes to suggest that the power of the state over 
the person of its convicts is restricted to any greater 
degree than this. 

The argument for the plaintiff continued as 

The labor of the Rhode Island convicts had never 
been leased at the time the constitutional provision 
was enacted. The first evidence of any system of 
convict labor in the state appears in the year 1834 
when a popular referendum was had upon the ques- 
tion whether a state prison should be built. The 
election resulted in favor of the scheme; commis- 
sioners were appointed to buy land and build a 
prison under a plan of "separate confinement at 
labor, with instructors." The prison was completed 
in 1838 and on November 16th four convicts were 
committed to its cells. While it is stated that they 
could "arrange and contract for the labor of the 
prisoners," contract for the disposal of the product 
of their labor is undoubtedly meant; at all events 
the present contract system was not adopted nor 
even considered for many years thereafter. 2 

Slowly the labor system developed. First, the 
solitary labor, owing to its evil effect on the sanity 
of the prisoners, gave way to shop labor; then a 
wage of 33J cents for each day a prisoner labored 
was allowed towards the payment of his fine ; finally 
in 1852 the contract system was introduced and in 
1857 we find the statutory provision that convicts 

1 Oliver v. State, 39 Miss. 526, 539; Dave c. State, 22 Ala. 23, 34. 

2 Report, State Prison Inspectors, 1876, pp. 16-27. 


"shall be let or kept at labor ... for the benefit 
of the state, in such manner, under such contract, 
and subject to such rules, regulations, and discipline 
as the inspectors of the state prison may make or 
appoint." l An important innovation was intro- 
duced in 1874 when the Board of Inspectors was 
authorized, in its discretion, to pay to convicts 
upon their discharge or during their imprisonment 
to their dependents a sum not exceeding one tenth 
of the convict's actual earnings during confinement. 2 

Commenting upon this experiment in their next 
report the Inspectors state : 

" There have as yet been but two applications for 
relief under the law authorizing the inspector to 
pay a certain portion of the earnings of a prisoner 
to his needy family. But the inspectors are fully 
convinced of the wisdom and benefit of such a law, 
and regard it as a wholesome element in the dis- 
cipline of the Institution. Hope is the chief factor 
in the moral elevation of mankind, and so far as 
it can be applied in this and kindred ways, to the 
reformation of the criminal, by inducing good be- 
havior and diligent habits of work, it will be found 
successful in the production of encouraging results." 3 

A further provision for wage is found in the legis- 
lation of 1877 which created the State Board of 
Charities and Corrections to have control over the 
conduct of the prison and the discipline and employ- 
ment of the prisoners. This new Board was in- 
structed to provide that the convict on discharge 
should be decently clothed and that in no case should 
he receive a sum less than five dollars. 4 

1 R. S., 1857, c. 226, 15. 

2 Laws of 1874, c. 350. See Report of Board of Inspectors, 1872, p. 10. 

3 Report of Board of Inspectors, 1872, p. 10. 
R.S. 1882, c. 254, 39. 


A careful review of the prison legislation from 
the date of the constitution shows that while wage 
for convicts had not been thought of at that time, 
contract labor was equally foreign to the thought 
of that day, and was not introduced in the state 
until at least ten years later. Indeed, in 1842, 
the problem was not a considerable one, as in that 
year, "the number of convicts had increased to 
thirty-seven. " x There is no evidence that had the 
framers of the Constitution considered the contract 
system they would have desired to except it from 
the anti-slavery provision, and the provision must 
be applied to the situation which has arisen since 
its adoption in the light of its general meaning and 
purpose to prohibit utterly the existence of slavery 
in any form. 

The well-established facts regarding the contract 
system were advanced to show the reasonableness 
of such a proposition and that there were no grounds 
for claiming that a reasonable construction of the 
constitutional provision would forbid the denial to 
the State of the right to lease its convict labor to 
private contractors. The inevitable tendency of 
the contract system is to employ the convicts at 
tasks injurious to their health and to drive them 
far beyond their strength in an effort to extract 
the largest amount of profit for the contractor and 
the state. Its detrimental effect upon the free 
workingman employed by manufacturers striving to 
compete with the prison contractor and at the same 
time attempting to pay their employees a living 
wage, is equally well known. In short, the worst 
features of the sweat-shop system, both in and out 
of prison, are exhibited in every industry and state 
where the system of contract labor obtains. The 

1 Report of Board of Prison Inspectors, 1876, p. 27. 


wide-spread public belief to this effect is shown by 
the number of states which have prohibited, in whole 
or in part, the leasing of convict labor to private 

Summing up the facts of the case, it may be said 
that the state stands in the place of the slave-owner 
of ante-bellum days ; and the contractor is the lessee, 
or purchaser for a term of years, of the services 
of the convict. This amounts in substance to a 
disposal of the convict himself, since it entails of 
necessity the practical control of the convict's 
person, as well as his services, by the lessee's agent. 
It is true that the latter has not absolute power 
over the convict's person. Neither did the lessee 
of a slave; he was obliged to use reasonable care 
and moderation in the treatment and discipline of 
the slave hired by him and was liable to the owner 
for any injury resulting from an abuse of power. 1 

The fact that part of the state's control over the 
convict was not delegated by the Board of Control 
and Supply to the contractor is not sufficient to 
differentiate the present case. The statute obviously 
authorized the Board to delegate to the contractor 
complete control over the person and conduct of the 
prisoner while at work, subject to the restriction 
as to corporal punishment, and this power conferred 
by the Board, not the extent to which it was exer- 
cised, is the test of the statute's validity. A court 
in passing on the constitutionality of a statute is 
not confined to its language, but may look to its 
necessary or natural effect and its actual operation. 
Hence, a statute, which is fair on its face will be 
found unconstitutional if in its actual operation 

1 Latimer v. Alexander, 14 Ga. 259; Craig's Adm'r v. Lee, 53 Ky. 
96; James v. Carper (Term.), 4 Sneed 397. 


it leads to a result, prohibited by the constitution, 
or if its natural effect will be to bring about such a 
result. Applying such a test to the statute authoriz- 
ing the State Board of Control and Supply to con- 
tract the labor of prisoners, the statute is in viola- 
tion of the provision of the State Constitution 
forbidding slavery and must be deemed invalid. 

The counsel for the defense, Honorable Herbert 
A. Rice, Attorney General of Rhode Island, and Mr. 
Zechariah Chafee, Jr., threw interesting light on the 
question of convict slavery. Their argument may 
be briefly summarized as follows : 

The letting of prison labor by the state under 
contract is not slavery within the Rhode Island 
Constitution when considered both in the light of 
Rhode Island statutes and decisions and on general 

The rights and conditions of a prisoner under 
Rhode Island law are widely different from those of 
a slave. The accepted definition of slavery, "slav- 
ery as defined in our statutes means a special kind 
of servitude for life," puts the emphasis on "servitude 
for life" which was considered interchangeable 
with slavery. Moreover, slavery was the ownership 
of one human being by another and not simply the 
temporary service which existed in the case at bar. 
The word "slave" as used in the Rhode Island 
statutes, clearly meant a person held under the 
well-known institution of slavery, and not one 
under involuntary servitude in a general sense. 
The members of the constitutional convention in 
1842, 1 living under these statutes, would naturally 

i Laws of Rhode Island, 1798, p. 607. Public Laws, 1822, p. 441 
(in force till 1844). 


have them In mind when they used the word, and 
employ it with the same meaning. 

The rights of a prisoner are far wider in Rhode 
Island than those of a slave : 

"The slave had no property rights whatever, 
could neither sue nor be sued, nor take by descent, 
there being in him no inheritable blood." 

The rights of a Rhode Island prisoner in regard 
to property and access to the courts may be con- 
trasted with those of a slave : 

A convict can have interest in property while a 
slave cannot; a convict can sue while a slave can- 
not; a convict is liable on a contractual obligation 
while a slave is not, this distinction remaining 
whether or not the convict's labor is subject to a 
contract. While the convict's rights are consider- 
ably limited because of his imprisonment he still 
retains many important rights, which a slave en- 
tirely lacks, and consequently cannot be considered 
a slave under our law. 

Definitions and judicial descriptions of slavery, not 
limited to Rhode Island but based on general author- 
ity, do not apply to the situation of the plaintiff. 

The only characteristics, according to these defini- 
tions, which a slave and the plaintiff have in com- 
mon are compulsory unpaid labor with benefit to 
the private person, and confinement. There are 
several other important features of slavery which 
may be considered in the following order : 

(1) Deprivation of practically all civil rights; 

(2) Practically complete control by a master; 


(3) Service for life ; 

(4) The imposition of similar disqualifications 

upon the offspring. 

Deprivation of practically all civil rights: A slave 
could neither sue nor be sued, at law or in equity, 
except to enforce his freedom. 1 A convict can sue 
and can be sued and appear to defend himself. 2 

A slave could not contract and an attempted 
contract created no rights or obligations on either 
side. 3 A convict can contract. 4 

A slave could not own property or acquire it by 
deed or will, except that his freedom could be willed 
him. 5 A convict can acquire and own property, 
although according to the Rhode Island Statutes, 
he cannot convey it or make a will. 6 The convict 
is not a mere chattel like a slave but has the same 
rights with regard to his person as any other man. 7 

Practically complete control by a master : A man 
is not a slave unless an owner is shown to exist. 
The convict cannot show completeness of control 
as paragraph sixth of the contract between the 
state and the Shirt Company provides : 

1 Wicks v. Chew, 4 H. and J. (Md.) 543, 547. Stenhouse v. Bonum, 
12 Rich. (S. C.) 620. 

2 Bowles v. Habermann, 95 N. Y. 246. 

3 Hall v. U. S.. 92 U. S. 27. 

4 Stephani v. Lent, 63 N. Y., Supp. 471. 

B Jackson v. Lervey, 5 Cow. (N. Y.) 397. Gist v. Toohey, 2 Rich. 
(S. C.) 424. 

6 Avery . Everett, 110 N. Y. 317. La Chapelle v. Burpee, 69 Hun 

7 Westbrook v. State, 133 Ga. 578, 585 (1909). St. Louis etc. Co. v. 
Hydrick, Ark. (1913) 160 S. W. 1.96. 


"It is understood and agreed that said party of 
the first part (the state) shall at all times have the 
right to control and govern said inmates, to regulate 
their conduct and to assign the tasks to be performed 
under this agreement, and further to make and in- 
stitute all rules and regulations for the proper dis- 
cipline and guidance of said inmates, and at any 
time to change the same, and further to forbid and 
prevent any mode, or any manner or method of 
performing the same, that may be deemed injurious 
to the health, dangerous to the person, or subversive 
to prison discipline." 

Under such circumstances the relation between 
the Shirt Company and the plaintiff is not even 
so strong as that of master and servant. 

Other cases are cited which hold that the contrac- 
tor is not liable to an outsider for injury caused by 
a convict's negligence, as the latter was not a serv- 
ant ; 1 and that the contractor is not liable for the 
willful act of a convict leased, since the state had 
control, even though the injury was on Sunday 
when the contractor paid the convict for his labor. 2 
This case is especially strong because the convict 
was receiving pay from the contractor, yet even 
this circumstance, in addition to those which existed 
in the case at bar, was not sufficient to make the 
contractor master of the convict. 

Service for Life : Service for Life is a well-known 
characteristic of slavery 3 which does not exist in 
the plaintiff's case. 

1 Cunningham v. Bay State, 25 Hun 210. 

2 St. Louis, etc. v. Boyle, 83 Ark. 302. 

3 Pennsylvania Statute of March 1, 1780. Barrington v. Logan, 2 
Dana (Ky.) 432, 434. Miller v. Dwilling, 14 Serg. and R. 442. 


The imposition of similar disqualifications upon 
the offspring: The children of slave women were 
slaves. Of course, the children of a convict are not 
convicts, nor can they, in Rhode Island, be sub- 
jected to any disability. 

Thus, unlike a slave, the plaintiff could sue and 
be sued, contract, own and acquire property; he 
was hardly at all under the control of his alleged 
master, the Shirt Company; he was not in service 
for life ; and no disqualifications were imposed upon 
his offspring. In view of these circumstances his con- 
dition was absolutely different from that of a slave. 

The contracts for the labor of convicts existed 
in Rhode Island before 1842 when the constitution 
was drafted. An act of February 3, 1838, reads : 

"Nor shall they (the inspectors of the state 
prison) be in any way interested in any contract 
for the supplies for the same (the prison) or the labor 
of the convicts." Thus contracts for the labor 
of convicts were in sufficient common use to make 
it desirable that those in charge of the prison should 
be prohibited from having any improper personal 
interest in such contracts. If the word "slavery" 
in the constitution was intended to have a wide 
meaning and include the letting of prison contracts, 
why were such contracts suffered to continue and 
why five years after the constitution was drafted 
did the legislature, which included many members 
of the constitutional convention, expressly provide 
for contracts for prison labor ? 1 

Thus, although the validity of the prison contracts 
has never been before the courts, it has been re- 
peatedly recognized by legislators through a period 

i Public Laws of Rhode Island (1844-1857), p. 672. 


of over seventy-five years, nor has it been questioned 
by any person until this suit was brought. Such 
protracted, continuous and thorough acquiescence, 
if not conclusive, is a strong argument, and the 
settled opinion and practice of many legislatures is 
entitled to serious consideration, even if it has not 
the authority of a judicial decision. 

If it is not slavery for the state to employ the 
prisoners in making articles which are sold by the 
state to an outsider, who resells them at a profit to 
himself, then it is not slavery for the state to 
oblige the prisoners to work on materials furnished 
by an outsider when the state retains control over 
the prisoners and is paid by the outsider for their 
labor. In both cases, they are servants of the 
state and controlled only by the state. In the one 
case, the state furnishes goods to an outsider; and 
in the other, labor, just as when a carpenter brings 
his gang to work on a house. The gang does not 
become the servants of the owner of the house. It 
may be said that it is slavery for the state to oblige 
the prisoners to work for the profit of the contractor, 
but there is a similar profit for the contractor if he 
buys goods from the state and then resells. 

The question of slavery or no slavery can hardly 
be said to depend upon whether the state is paid 
an adequate price for the labor of the prisoners. 

Moreover, even when the prisoners are employed 
on material furnished by the state, private persons 
may profit. Shortly after Rhode Island had pro- 
hibited slavery in its constitution the legislature 
provided that "the keeper of each county jail, except 
the jail of the county of Providence, shall be allowed 
in full for his services under this Act, fifty per cent 
of all profits on the labor done under his care and 


oversight by prisoners committed to such jail." 
If the plaintiff was a slave of the shirt factory, then the 
prisoners under this statute were slaves of the keeper. 

The consideration of the provisions as to slavery 
in other constitutions shows that it does not include 
prison contract labor. 

The provision in the federal constitution regard- 
ing slavery came from the ordinance of 1787 enacted 
by the Continental Congress for the government 
of the Northwest Territory. The federal constitu- 
tional amendment abolishing slavery was in ful- 
fillment of the plank in the Republican platform of 
1864: "We are in favor of such an amendment 
to the constitution, to be made by the people in 
conformity with its provisions, as shall terminate 
and forever prohibit the existence of slavery within 
the limits of the jurisdiction of the United States." 

This plank makes no exception of slavery as pun- 
ishment for crime. The reason for the addition of 
"Involuntary servitude" is given by Justice Miller 1 
who explains that the word "slavery" was too nar- 
row to apply to imperfect forms of servitude, or in 
the words of Professor Willoughby : 2 "Its terms 
were purposely made broad enough to include not 
only the slavery of any person, whatever his race or 
color, but his involuntary servitude save as a punish- 
ment for crime." 

Punishment for crime is the one kind of invol- 
untary servitude which properly could not be for- 
bidden. Therefore, as Professor Willoughby says, 
the exception was made to the prohibition of invol- 
untary servitude. Some commentators on the con- 

1 Slaughter House Cases, 16 Wall. 36, 42. 2 Constitution, p. 850. 


stitution have considered that it is also an exception 
to the prohibition of slavery. This question has 
never been passed upon by the courts but it is incon- 
ceivable that a man convicted of crime should be 
condemned to the condition of a negro slave before 
the Civil War and the exception in the thirteenth 
amendment can be said to modify only the words 
immediately before, "involuntary servitude", and 
not the word "slavery." Slavery is absolutely 
forbidden by the Thirteenth Amendment as well 
as by the Rhode Island Constitution, and if prison 
contract labor is illegal slavery in Rhode Island it 
is illegal slavery throughout the United States. Yet 
no case has ever arisen contesting its constitutionality 
on this ground, and the United States Supreme Court 
has decided litigation connected with prison contract 
labor without question as to its validity. 1 

The prohibition of the Rhode Island Constitu- 
tion is not wider than that of the federal constitu- 
tion ; it is narrower. In the absence of any informa- 
tion, the word "slavery" must be taken in the sense 
usual at that time and applied to the institution of 
slavery as it then existed. It could not for instance 
be applied to the white slave trade. 

The upshot of the discussion is this. "Slavery" 
in the Federal Constitution has been regarded as 
a narrow term, meaning an institution like that 
which formerly existed in this country, and "in- 
voluntary servitude" was added to include imperfect 
forms of compulsory labor. There is no reason to 
suppose that "slavery" had a wider significance in 
the Rhode Island Constitution. 2 

1 Nugent c. Arizona Co., 173 U. S. 338. 

3 R. I. State Constitutional Journal, etc. (In Library of the Rhode 
Island Historical Society, R. 34 J.) 


In many constitutions there is possibly an excep- 
tion of slavery in punishment of crime, but such a 
construction is objectionable and if it is not taken, 
the existence of prison contract labor under those 
constitutions, particularly that of the United States, 
is an argument that such labor is not slavery. In 
the Constitution of Rhode Island and several other 
states, no such exception can possibly be construed, 
and the long-unquestioned establishment of prison 
contract labor in all of these states except Ohio is 
a serious obstacle in the way of the plaintiff. The 
judiciary of one of these states, Alabama, has ex- 
pressly declared that prison contract labor is not 
slavery. 1 

Comparison is made between the system of con- 
tracting the labor of convicts and of apprenticing 
minors without pay to be skilled mechanics. The 
servitude in cases of apprenticeship is held nearer 
slavery than in the case of the convict because 
the latter did have a choice whether or not he would 
commit the crime while the minor has no choice in 
the matter, absolute power to bind him out being 
in the hands of his father. 2 

The binding out of the pauper children and adults 
by the overseer of the poor is analogous to the 
case at bar. A decision that prison contract labor 
is slavery would necessarily result in a declara- 
tion that this method of lessening the burden of 
pauperism on the public is also slavery, though 
it has prevailed since 1741 and is provided for in 
the very statute which abolished slavery. 3 

1 Buchalew v. Tennessee Coal, etc., Co., 112 Ala. 146, 157 (1895). 

2 General Laws 1909, c. 249, 1, Nelson v. People, 33 111. 390 (1864), 

3 Exeter v. Warwick, 1 R. I. 63, 65 ; Kennedy . Meara, 127 Ga. 68, 77. 


Employment of prisoners at hard labor is a long 
established practice in all the states which clearly 
abolish slavery without exception as to punishment 
for crime, yet in no case has it been held to be 
slavery. 1 

Other forms of compulsory labor which are closely 
connected with the functions of the state and public 
welfare have not been held as slavery; compulsory 
labor on streets with imprisonment as a penalty for 
refusal, 2 compulsory military service, 3 compulsory 
service by merchant sailors who attempt to desert, 4 
working out fines for violations of municipal ordi- 
nances not amounting to crimes. 5 

To sum up the arguments for the defence : 

The plaintiff was not a slave, because the de- 
fendants had none of the control over him which a 
master has over his slave; because prison contract 
labor has never been held to be slavery in this or 
any other state which absolutely forbids slavery, 
and because it is declared by the Supreme Courts 
of Illinois and Georgia not to be slavery; because 
it existed when the Rhode Island Constitution was 
drafted, and was expressly continued by a statute 
passed soon afterwards, and reenacted over and 
over again, so that all contemporary and legislative 
opinion in this state supports its constitutionality; 
because hard labor and other analogous forms of 
involuntary servitude are not slavery ; and because 
a direct Rhode Island decision 6 and many other 

iTopeka v. Boutwell, 53 Kan. 20; 27 L. R. A. 593 (1894). 

2 Re Dassler, 35 Kan. 678, 684 (1886). 

3 Peonage Cases, 123 Fed. 671, 681 (1903). * 

4 Robertson v. Baldwin, 165 U. S. 275, 282. 

8 Mayor, etc., of Monroe v. Meuer, 35 La. Ann. 1192. 
6 Kenyon v. Saunders, 18 R. I. 590. 


cases l show that a convict, whether under a labor 
contract or not, has opportunities and rights com- 
pletely denied to a slave. 

The temporary and limited effect of a prison 
contract upon the laborer, and its public purposes, 
differentiate it sharply from the complete private 
appropriation of labor forbidden by the slavery 
clause of our constitution. 

The logical conclusion is that the statute authoriz- 
ing the prison contract is not in conflict with the 
constitution and the contract is legal. 

In the Reply Brief for the plaintiff we find further 
consideration of the authorities relied upon by the 
defendant : 

The Counsel for the defence, it is stated, argued 
from the statute of 1798, which seems to use 
"slavery" and "servitude for life" as synonymous 
terms ; they also claimed that the constitution of 
1842 used the word "slavery" in the same limited 

This conclusion does not follow. The Act of 
1798 was a very partial abolition of slavery compared 
to the constitutional provisions, both state and 
federal, which came after it. For example, Section 
I provided : 

"That for the future no negro, mulatto, or Indian 
slave shall be brought into this State; and if any 
slave shall hereafter be brought in, he or she shall be 
and hereby is rendered immediately free, so far as 
respects personal freedom and the enjoyment of 

1 Previously cited in this article. 


private property in the same manner as the native 
Indian ; provided nevertheless that this Act should 
not be deemed to extend to the domestic slaves or 
servants of citizens of other states or of foreigners 
traveling through the State or coming to reside 
therein, nor to servants or slaves escaping from 
service or servitude in other states, or in foreign 
countries and coming of their own accord into this 

It is apparent that the intention of this Act was 
not absolutely to do away with human bondage 
within the state. 

The simple, direct provision of the constitution 
of 1842 evidences quite a different intention. "Slav- 
ery shall not be permitted in this state." The 
absence of definition or qualification suggests an 
intentional broader use of the term. It is impos- 
sible to believe that the framers of the Rhode Island 
Constitution in 1842 only 19 years before the 
outbreak of the Civil War intended to permit, 
even in a qualified form, the existence of human 
bondage within the state. 

The assertion, sustained by reference to the Act 
of 1838, that prison contracts existed prior to the 
constitution does not hold, in that the report of 
the Board of Inspectors in 1876 definitely states 
that the contract system was introduced in 1852. 
The same report shows that "on the 16th of Novem- 
ber of that year four convicts were committed" to 
the cells of the State Prison. If the contract system 
obtained among these four prisoners and we may 
safely take the word of the State Prison Inspectors 
that it did not it must have been a somewhat 
insignificant problem, not in the minds of the fram- 
ers of the Constitution. 


Regarding the "chief characteristics of slavery" 
enumerated in the defence, it has been earlier shown 
that all of these disabilities attached to the ordinary 
slave in most of the Southern States, but that nearly 
all of them, either by statute or common law, were 
partially removed in several states of the South. 
In short, they were the usual but not the necessary 
incidents of slavery as it obtained in the South 
before the Thirteenth Amendment. 

The statement that the convict is not a mere 
chattel like a slave but has the same rights with 
regard to his person as any other man can hardly 
hold when viewed in the light of the following stat- 
ute provision : 

"A warden in charge of convicts working on a 
county chain-gang has no authority to administer 
corporal punishment to a convict except such as 
may be reasonably necessary to compel the convict 
to work or labor in the execution o his sentence 
or to maintain proper discipline." 1 

The inference is that in the absence of such stat- 
ute provision, there would be no limitation on the 
power of the warden, while even under this statute 
the condition of the convict is not substantially 
unlike that of the old time slave. 

A decision holding that the convict is not the 
contractor's servant seems rather irrelevant to the 
question of the status of the convict himself. Be- 
sides it is not necessary to a condition of slavery 
that a slave be subject to the control and direction 
of a single person, the contractor. The control may 
well be divided, as in this case. If the convict 
were owned outright by the state and his services 

1 Westbrook v. State, 133 Ga. 578. 


leased to the contractor, no one would question that 
a state of slavery existed ; yet such a control would 
be as divided as it is in the present case. 

It has been argued that the qualification "except 
as a punishment for crime" in the Federal Consti- 
tution does not apply to slavery, but only to invol- 
untary servitude. The language and punctuation 
of the Thirteenth Amendment do not seem to justify 
this interpretation. It is natural, however, that 
judges should be unwilling to concede, when they 
do not have to decide, that slavery in its narrowest 
sense the ownership of mankind as a chattel 
is permitted by the Thirteenth Amendment even as 
a punishment for crime. 

It does not follow, however, that slavery in its 
broader sense is not excepted from the prohibition 
of the Thirteenth Amendment along with involun- 
tary servitude. Even if it were so it would not 
follow that the system under which the plaintiff's 
services were sold to the defendant does not con- 
stitute slavery within the meaning of the Rhode 
Island Constitution. 

The prevalence of the Contract System in other 
states whose constitutions forbid slavery in any 
form is slight argument for the legality of the sys- 
tem when it has not been the subject of direct judi- 
cial attack on that ground. 1 

That no analogy ought to be established between 
contract labor and the employment of prisoners at 
ordinary hard labor has earlier been discussed. 
Apprenticeship and compulsory service are dis- 
posed of by the Supreme Court as follows : 2 

1 In Buckalaw v. Tennessee Coal etc., Co., 112 Ala. 146. 

2 Clyatt v. United States, 207, 218 (1905). 


"We need not stop to consider any possible 
limits or exceptional cases such as the services of a 
sailor, 1 or the obligations of a child to its parents, 
or of an apprentice to his master, or the power of 
the legislature to make unlawful and punish crim- 
inally an abandonment by an employe of his post 
of labor in any extreme cases." 

Clearly the punishment of crime was not con- 
sidered one of these implied exceptions by the 
framers of the Thirteenth Amendment, or they 
would not have included it expressly. 

The binding out of pauper children as appren- 
tices by the overseer of the poor is hardly an analo- 
gous case. The opinion in regard to binding out 
pauper children states : 

"Therefore it necessarily follows that when the 
state has to assume the control and custody of the 
child, its conduct towards it would be the same that 
a dutiful parent would exercise, keeping in view the 
welfare of the child." 2 

No argument is needed to show the difference 
between that case and this. That the state stands 
in loco parentis to the convict, and leases his services 
to a private contractor with an eye to the convict's 
welfare, will hardly be contended. 

Prison contract labor is primarily a benefit to 
the private contractor and incidentally a benefit 
to the state. The vast discrepancy between the 
compensation paid the state under such a contract 
and the wages paid free labor is demonstration 

1 Robertson v. Baldwin, 165 U. S. 275. 

2 Kennedy v. Meara, 127 Ga. 68. 


thereof. The private rather than the public nature 
of the benefits derived from such contracts, as 
well as their detrimental effects upon the convict, 
the state, and the public at large have led to the 
abandonment of the system in many states. 

The opinion handed down in February, 1916, 
some fifteen months after the case was heard, was 
by Chief Justice Johnson. 

The court, in a lengthy and elaborate opinion, 
sustained the arguments of the plaintiff's counsel 
that the clause of the Rhode Island Constitution 
under consideration had the same effect upon slav- 
ery as the Thirteenth Amendment to the Federal 
Constitution, that slavery as a legal status ceased 
to exist within the state upon its adoption, and that 
this provision, while designed to forbid slavery as 
it existed in this country and had existed in Rhode 
Island, doubtless applied equally to all races of men. 
The point to be determined, then, was whether the 
condition of the plaintiff was slavery. 

The court found that "The condition of slavery 
sought to be established is a synthetic slavery made 
up from the incidents inherent in the conditions of 
being a convict lawfully under sentence and the 
fact that said convict was compelled to work pur- 
suant to the contract made under the statute. 

"As we have seen," the opinion reads, "the alleged 
direct control by the contractor is not present. 
The plaintiff's inability to dispose of his person, 
property and service, is in no way due to the contract 
of which he complains, but is an incident of his 
condition as a convict. Then, on the other hand, 


there are present rights which are not those of a 
slave, as the right to sue and the right to enter into 
a contractual obligation in the necessary prose- 
cution of his suit; and in short all the rights of an 
ordinary citizen which are not necessarily taken 
from him by reason of his condition as a convict. 
The condition of alleged slavery which he has con- 
structed fills the requirements of no definition, 
which has been cited, not even the one he selects 
as the most accurate one to be found in the books. 
That requires ' a state of bondage the ownership 
of mankind as a chattel.' That portion of the defi- 
nition he passed by and depends upon the remain- 
ing portion, viz. : ' at least, the control of labor and 
services of one man for the benefit of another, and 
the absence of a legal right to the disposal of his 
own person, property and service/ Of the portion 
thus selected, the words : * the control of labor and 
services of one man for the benefit of another' 
constitute the sum total of material for the construc- 
tion of the condition of slavery claimed, as 'the 
absence of a legal right to dispose of his own person, 
property or services' is incident to his legal status 
as a convict under sentence for a term in State 
Prison, and does not in any way result from the 
contract. As to said first part of said selected por-. 
tion of the definition, his counsel seem to recognize 
the necessity of a master for a slave and say that 
' the labor and service of the plaintiff were controlled 
directly by the contractor,' which is not alleged 
in the declaration, adding 'and he was compelled 
by force and threats, against his will, to perform 
tasks assigned him,' which last is alleged in the 
declaration, but the declaration fails to allege that 
he was thus compelled by the defendant. 

"As has been seen, it is not claimed that to cause 
a prisoner to work for the State is a violation of the 
constitutional provision forbidding slavery, but that 


to cause him to work upon the materials of another 
than the State, under a contract between such other 
person and the State, under the control of the State, 
in the prison of the State, the State receiving compen- 
sation therefor, results in the transformation of the 
labor which is imposed upon the convict as a part 
of his sentence, into that of a slave, and constitutes 
a condition of slavery. If this contention is sound, 
it follows that while the State may compel the con- 
vict to work for the State upon the materials of 
the State in its workshop situated in the prison, the 
State must own the materials upon which the work 
is done or the convict cannot be lawfully compelled 
to work. The State must therefore engage in busi- 
ness in which it directly employs the convict upon 
its own material or it cannot lawfully compel him 
to work at all. 

" Does the convict work any the less for the State 
when he is compelled to work upon the property 
and with the appliances of a contractor with the 
State, in the prison of the State under the control of 
the State, for a wage paid to the State by the con- 
tractor under a contract made with the State, than 
when he so works upon materials owned by the 
State? It is claimed that he is compelled to work 
for the benefit of another and not for the State. 
True, his labor is done upon materials which are 
not the property of the State. The contractor with 
the State, however, only has the labor done thereon 
for which he pays the State, and which it was the 
right of the State to have done as a part of the sen- 
tence imposed upon the convict. We cannot think 
that the condition of the convict is changed by such 
work upon the materials of the contractor from his 
condition as a convict into that of a slave, either of 
the State or the contractor. 

"We see no reason to doubt that, in adopting Sec- 
tion 4 of Article I of the Constitution, the conven- 


tion and the people had in mind slavery as it then 
existed in some of the states of the Union and as 
it had existed in this State. 

"The word 'slavery' at that time was used both 
in our statutes and in common parlance to mean 
a very definite thing, namely, the institution of 
slavery. We see no reason to suppose that it was 
used in the constitution in any other sense. The 
fact that prison labor existed, without question, 
contemporaneously with the adoption of the con- 
stitution is also strong evidence that the prohibition 
was not intended to include such labor. The long 
acquiescence in the legislative exercise of the power 
to let prison labor, beginning January, 1847, is also 
a strong argument in favor of the validity of that 

"We are of the opinion that the plaintiff has en- 
tirely failed to establish his contention that his sta- 
tus under said contract was that of a slave." 

The court has thus decided that the contract 
system of convict labor, when the contractor is not 
given absolute power to enforce his control over the 
prisoner, does not create a slave status for the pris- 
oner. What would be the opinion in the case of a 
contract such as that, dated January 20, 1858, 
between Thomas W. Hix, Warden of Maine State 
Prison, and David H. Summer and Henry Maxcy, 
the contractors ? After providing that the contrac- 
tors shall feed and clothe the convicts, the contract 
continues "and it is hereby further stipulated and 
agreed that the aforesaid overseers in the several 
departments of labor shall perform all the duties of 
disciplinarians and turnkeys, and be paid by the 
said Summer and Maxcy." This would appear 


to give definite and complete power of enforcement 
to the contractors. Would it create a slave status 
for the prisoners ? 

We know that the convict is not a freeman ; the 
Rhode Island court has decided that under the con- 
tract system when the contractor has not absolute 
power of control over the convict the latter is not 
a slave. We have yet to learn what the precise status 
of the convict really is. Is he the slave of the State, 
a ward of the State, or does he occupy still some other 
status ? 

To answer the question we must know the true 
interpretation of the Thirteenth Amendment. Does 
this amendment sanction slavery, or merely invol- 
untary servitude as punishment for crime? A 
final and satisfactory answer to this question can 
only be had from the Supreme Court of the United 
States. Meanwhile, however, the principles and v 
spirit of modern penology point to the abolition of 
uncompensated prison labor, along with other sur- 
vivals of the outworn theory that the convict is an 
outcast from society and has no human rights which 
the State sees fit to withhold. 




Chairman, Committee on the Federal Office of Prisons, 
National Committee on Prisons and Prison Labor 



Chairman, Executive Council, National Committee on Prisons and Prison 




THE Constitution of the United States makes no 
provision for the punishment of crime other than the 
violation of the laws of the United States as they 
affect international relationships, cases of admiralty 
and maritime jurisdictions, and the relationships 
between the several States, between citizens of dif- 
ferent States, and between a State or the citizens 
thereof and foreign States, citizens or subjects. 1 
All other matters relative to the perpetration of 
crime and the punishment of the criminal come under 
the jurisdiction of the several States. Imprison- 
ment for violation of our international relationships 
has been very rare, while, until a few years ago, there 
were few statutes regulating interstate relationships 
under which convictions were made; moreover, of 
the more serious offenses, prior to 1892, sixteen were 
punishable by death ! 2 The result has been that the 
number of prisoners held directly under Federal 
control has been restricted to the military and naval 
prisoners and to men convicted of such offenses as 
tampering with the mails or stealing stamps, pension 

1 Constitution of the United States, Art. Ill, 1. 

2 Gen. Newton Marten Curtis, Speech before the House of Representa- 
tives, June 9, 1882. 



frauds, infringement of patent rights, and the of- 
fenses of the frontier cattle stealing, and fraud- 
ulent registration of homestead rights. The policy 
of the Federal Government has further limited the 
number of prisoners, for the control of which it is 
directly responsible, by boarding out its prisoners in 
State and county institutions, where they are subject 
to the same rules and regulations as other prisoners 
in those institutions. These several factors have 
contributed to render the development of our Federal 
penal system of minor importance, and to-day we do 
not look to the Federal Government for leadership 
in prison matters. 

This state of affairs cannot continue. The ad- 
vancement of the theory of general governmental 
supervision has greatly increased the number of 
statutes under which prosecutions are made. The 
greater number of national banks and the severity 
of the laws regulating these institutions have resulted 
in a corresponding increase in the number of persons 
prosecuted for violation of the national banking 
statutes. The Department of Agriculture is doing 
salutary work in attempting to keep pure our supply 
of foods and drugs. To accomplish this a number 
of penal statutes have been enacted under which 
innumerable criminal prosecutions have been insti- 
tuted. So in other departments of government, the 
field of operations is being extended with an attend- 
ant increase of criminal prosecutions to enforce the 
law. The present attitude toward capital punish- 
ment also tends to increase the number of Federal 
prisoners, for although the death penalty is still 


retained by statute for murder, rape, and treason, 
the jury is given the option of life imprisonment even 
for the grave offense of treason. The growing oppo- 
sition to the exploitation of the prisoner under the 
lease and contract system has forced the withdrawal 
of all Federal prisoners from State and county insti- 
tutions where such systems prevail, and the retention 
of these prisoners in the Federal institutions. 

A decided increase in the number of Federal pris- 
oners has resulted, and the tendency is that this 
number will grow greater and greater, while we must 
also remember that public standards as to the treat- 
ment of the prisoner are steadily becoming higher, 
and the public will naturally expect from the Federal 
prisons conformance with the standards, if not the 
leadership, already pointed out as lacking to-day. 
The control over Federal prisoners presents, therefore, 
problems of increasing difficulty, and makes impera- 
tive a well-conceived plan, and a well-equipped plant 
to carry out the plan. 

The present system falls far short in both these 
essentials. The responsibility for the Federal prisons 
is to a great degree vested in the Department of 
Justice, a department overburdened with its many 
other duties. Even though certain matters are and 
have been from time to time under other departments 
State, War, Labor, and the Interior this does 
little to lessen the real burden while it gives rise to 
the many difficulties which follow divided authority. 
The situation can best be made clear by a brief survey 
of the development of our Federal prison system and 
the forces that have directed its operation. 


Congress in 1821 directed that Federal prisoners 
be quartered in State prisons and penitentiaries, 
subject to the approval of the State, and at the same 
time such prisoners were placed under the custody 
of United States marshals, under the direction of 
the Federal judges of the various districts. 1 Thir- 
teen years later it was decreed that all prisoners 
quartered in State institutions should be subjected 
to the same discipline and treatment as the prisoners 
of the State or territory in which the institution was 
situated. 2 Territorial prisoners were brought under 
the jurisdiction of the Attorney-General in 1871, 
the latter being empowered to prescribe all needful 
rules and regulations for their government, though 
the United States marshals were made responsible 
for the enforcement of these rules and regulations. 

The cost of maintenance, custody, and control of 
all prisoners in " a territory in which there may be 
no penitentiary or jail," was in 1864 authorized to 
be met out of the judiciary fund of the Department 
of Justice. 3 

We have noted that Federal prisoners quartered 
in State institutions were placed under the custody 
of the United States marshals, yet statutes were 
enacted in 1870, 1875, and 1891 providing that such 
prisoners might receive a deduction of time for good 
conduct upon a certificate of good conduct from the 
local warden or keeper, subject to the approval of 
the Attorney-General. 4 

1 U. S. Compiled Stat., 1901, Sec. 5537-5538. 

2 U. S. Compiled Stat., 1901, Sec. 5539. 

3 U. S. Compiled Stat., 1901, Sec. 5540. 

4 U. S. Compiled Stat., 1901, Sees. 5543-5544. 


The Federal government was forced to make 
further provision for its prisoners in 1887, when it 
was enacted that the Government of the United 
States should not contract with any person or cor- 
poration for the labor of prisoners, nor permit prison- 
ers to remain in any institution where the contract 
system obtained. 1 

Responsibility for Federal prisoners was placed 
upon the Secretary of the Interior as early as 1854 
when the warden of the penitentiary of the District 
of Columbia was instructed to submit to him his 
annual report. 2 

The Secretary of the Interior was further in- 
structed by a statute of 1874 to transfer, upon the 
application of the Attorney-General, to the In- 
sane Asylum in the District of Columbia all Federal 
prisoners who during the term of imprisonment 
should become insane. 3 

This act in 1882 was amended to include "all 
persons having been charged with offenses against 
the United States who are in the actual custody of 
the officers." 

The Attorney-General and the Secretary of the 
Interior in 1891 were jointly directed to purchase 
three sites for prisons for all persons sentenced to 
one year or more of hard labor by any court of the 

1 U. S. Compiled Stat., 1901, Sec. 5539. 

Editor's Note. Congress has begun the installation of industries in 
Federal prisons for the production of supplies needed by the Federal 
Government, by appropriating money for shops in the Sundry Civil 
Bill, June 12, 1917. 

U. S. Compiled Stat., 1901, Sec. 1828. 

8 U. S. Compiled Stat., 1901, Sec. 4852. 


United States. 1 They were jointly to select the sites 
and erect the buildings, but the Attorney-General 
alone was charged with the expenditure of a fund of 
$100,000 for the equipment of workshops where the 
prisoners were to be employed exclusively "in the 
manufacture of such supplies for the government 
as can be manufactured without the use of ma- 
chinery." The Attorney-General was given control 
over these prisons, and power to appoint the neces- 
sary officers and to arrange for the transportation of 
prisoners, while expenses for marshals, etc., were to 
be met from the judiciary fund. 

An attempt to centralize in the Department of 
Justice the responsibility for Federal prisoners can 
be noted in the legislation of 1895, which transferred 
the military prison at Fort Leavenworth from the 
Department of War to the Department of Justice. 2 
This centralization was of short duration, however, 
as next year the Department of Justice was ordered 
to restore Fort Leavenworth to the War Depart- 
ment, 3 on the completion of a new penitentiary on the 
military reserve, though the plans for the institution, 
the employment of the architect, and the matters 
pertaining to its construction were left with the 
Attorney-General . 

The Department of State was drawn into the 
prison arena in 1896, when it was enacted that the 
United States subscribe as an adhering member of 
the International Prison Commission, the commis- 

1 U. S. Compiled Stat., 1901, Sec. 5550. 

2 U. S. Compiled Stat., 1901, Sec. 1361. 
* U. S. Compiled Stat., 1901, Sec. 5550. 


sioner to be appointed by the President "under the 
Department of State." l Each succeeding Congress 
has made appropriation for the expense of this com- 
missioner and for the proportionate expense of the 
Commission for the United States. 

The Secretary of Labor also has his activity in 
connection with the Federal prison system. In 1914, 
in response to a Senate Resolution of November 10, 
1913, he transmitted to Congress a compilation of all 
Federal and State laws relating to convict labor, in- 
cluding all legislation regulating the sale and trans- 
portation of all convict-made goods, in so far as they 
relate to interstate commerce; and information as 
to the effect on free labor of the sale of convict-made 
goods, together with a description of the industries 
in which convict labor is employed and the value of 
the product of such labor. 2 

What does it all mean ? In brief, that the Presi- 
dent appoints the United States Commissioner to the 
International Prison Commission who serves under 
the State Department. The Navy Department has 
control over naval prisoners; the Department of 
War over military prisoners, together with super- 
vision of the prisons in Panama, Porto Rico, and 
the Philippine Islands. The Bureau of Labor Statis- 
tics in the Department of Labor publishes informa- 
tion in regard to the labor of prisoners and the 
products of the various penal institutions. The 
Department of the Interior has, with the Depart- 

1 U. S. Statutes at Large, 54th Congress, Sess. 1, C. 420, 1896. 

2 63 Cong., 2d Sess. S. D. # 494, Federal and State Laws relating to 
Convict Labor. 


ment of Justice, the responsibility for the selection 
of the sites and the erection of Federal prisons. All 
the reports from the correctional institutions in 
the District of Columbia are presented to the Secre- 
tary of the Interior. The Department of Justice 
has full charge of the three Federal penitentiaries, 
in which some 2,034 prisoners 1 are confined, and the 
1,180 Federal 2 prisoners confined in the State, county, 
and city prisons, the prisoners from the territories, 
and also the Bureau of Criminal Identification. The 
United States marshals, under the Federal courts, 
have oversight of prisoners held for trial, and lastly, 
the Department of Justice is responsible for the 131 
convicts in the government hospital, 3 which hospital 
is under the Department of the Interior. 

The final authority in matters pertaining to the 
care and discipline of the Federal prisoners is vested 
in the Attorney-General, a prosecuting officer. His 
success has lain in bringing the criminal within the 
pale of the law, but has his experience prepared him 
to apply the methods which will promote the rehabili- 
tation of the prisoner? To-day is the day of the 
specialist ; should we not call for the specialist in the 
penal as in every other field ? 

Furthermore, there is an increasing demand that 
the methods of modern business shall be applied 
to the administration of government. This would 
point to the centralization under one responsible 
head of all the activities of a department to prevent 

1 Letter to National Committee on Prisons and Prison Labor, June 
30, 1914. 

2 June 30, 1914. 3 June 30, 1914. 


duplication of effort, waste, and inefficiency. The 
National Committee on Prisons and Prison Labor 
has suggested that this thought be carried to the 
Federal Prison System; that a Federal office of 
prisons under the direction of a commissioner, an 
expert capable of applying the best thought along 
penal and coordinate lines, be established in Wash- 
ington with authority over all Federal prisons and 
prisoners and power to investigate all penal institu- 
tions where Federal prisoners are confined. 

This Federal office of prisons could facilitate co- 
operation between State agencies dealing with prison 
problems and conduct scientific researches for the 
Federal Government into the causes of crime with a 
view to the extermination of human pests. The 
Department of Agriculture is spending millions of 
dollars a year in exterminating insect pests, yet not 
one penny is at present devoted by the Federal / 
Government to the study of human pests, of the V 
forces which undermine and destroy the manhood 
and womanhood of our nation. 

The centralization of control would make possible 
the establishment of a clearing-house system and the 
development of a comprehensive and coordinate 
scheme of institutions, each equipped to meet the 
needs of special types of individuals as these needs 
are determined by scientific investigation. The Fed- 
eral prisons could then become great governmental 
laboratories, the model for State institutions, while 
the discipline under which the lives of Federal pris- 
oners are regulated could standardize prison dis- 
cipline throughout the country. 


In matters penal we have passed through the period 
of indifference and inertia to the period of transition 
and uprooting of the forces which have hindered 
development. We next must witness the applica- 
tion of sane, constructive measures which will insure 
permanent reform. The Federal Government must 
perforce meet its full responsibility to the prisoners 
under its control and Congress insure its leadership 
in the penal field by the establishment at Washington 
of the proposed Federal office of prisons. 


The businesslike administration of penal institu- 
tions is demanded by the public as a result of the 
exposure of the inadequacy of the methods used in 
these institutions to meet the conditions which they 
present. There has been much progress in the ad- 
ministration of all institutions, whether penal or 
educational, in the last decade. The duties of a 
college president, as has been so ably pointed out 
by President Butler of Columbia University, con- 
sisted a hundred years ago of teaching classes, whip- 
ping pupils, locking the building, and seeing that the 
place was clean ; , to-day he plans the fiscal policy 
three years in advance, and gives much attention 
to the national and international relationships of his 

Our conception of the duties of the administrative 
head of a penal institution is still on the former level 
and will have to rise to the latter. The first requi- 
site, therefore, to a reorganized prison administra- 
tion is the reshaping of our views as to administra- 


live functions and the interesting of men of broad 
viewpoint and recognized ability to undertake the 
administration of penal institutions. 

The warden who wrote "my prison is just a factory 
and is only interesting as such" failed to recognize 
the material with which he was working. Whatever 
our attitude toward the prisoner may be, it is clear 
that prisons exist to confine him and change him if 
possible; only incidentally must they produce 
marketable commodities in the way of manufactured 
articles. The output upon which success or failure 
must rest is the human output and it is generally 
admitted that the prison on this basis has so far been 
a failures 

Conditions exist which must be recognized. 
Probably the most important is the fact that this 
human material has been selected from the commu- 
nity by the hit or miss method of the discovery of a 
crime and a man's conviction. Another important 
factor is that the institution has to receive every 
person so selected. In our more populous States, 
where the prison population has been distributed 
amongst a number of institutions, there is the possi- 
bility of a man's being placed in an institution to 
which he is suited, though the framers of the law 
even in New York State did not comprehend nor pro- 
vide for such classification. To take this human 
material which is sent to the institutions and evalu- 

EDITOR'S NOTE : The control of the prison and the production and 
distribution of prison commodities are discussed in "Penal Servitude." 
This chapter might well be read in connection with "Penal Servi- 
tude", chapters 3, 5, 7. "Penal Servitude", E. Stagg Whitin. 


ate it so as to secure from it and for it the best possible 
results is the first requisite of business administra- 
tion. The reception prison with a competent staff, 
discussed in a preceding chapter, is the method 
by which to accomplish the result. 

Next, we must remember that the prison differs* 
from an ordinary industrial plant in that the prison 
workmen are not selected because of their special 
qualifications for a specific job. Their individual 
qualifications are as diversified as those of any group 
that could possibly be brought together. Efficiency v 
is secured by causing each member of a group to 
perform the function for which he is best suited. It 
will immediately become clear that an attempt to 
force all the members of this group of people into one 
factory producing one line of commodity will reduce 
practically all of them to the level of unskilled artisans. 
This has been the case when private prison contrac- N 
tors have leased prison workshops under contract ; 
a man has been considered simply as one more human 
machine to be worked despite his interest, former 
training, or ability. The result is the deadening, 
brutalizing work, under compulsion, which confirms 
the antagonism of the prisoner to the community 
outside the prison and strengthens his determination 
to return to a life of crime and get square with so- 

Now the prison should not be a factory but a 
community. We should realize that it is a commu- 
nity, a segment of society. The leaders of organized 
labor are right when they demand for the man skilled 
in his trade that he continue in that occupation, even 


though confined within the prison. Their conten- 
tion that he should not lose his skill and fail to be 
acceptable to the union upon release because of that 
loss emphasizes the fallacy of not usin'g his skill for 
the benefit of the prison community i The prison 
community should be self-sustaining. It should 
then provide an opportunity for the participation on 
the part of the man in every community activity. 
Besides being self-sustaining, the prison can produce 
for the other State and county institutions, which 
afford a market extremely diversified. There is, 
therefore, opportunity to meet the diversified indus- 
trial needs of the men. 

The training in a penal institution must be pri- " 
marily to adjust the prisoner to a normal environ- 
ment and to teach him to conform to the needs of 
community life.) The conception of the prison as a 
community is therefore of educational value as well 
as the means of securing the greatest efficiency from 
an administrative viewpoint. 

The conception of the prison as a lock-up or jail is 
evolving into the conception of the prison as a com- 
munity. The conception of the administrative head 
as a jailer is evolving into the conception of the gov- 
ernor of a self-expressing and self-developing com- 
munity. A businesslike administration postulates 
the highest development of self-government on the 
part of the inmates so that as many functions as 
possible can be performed by them, thus relieving 
the State of this duty and expense. The other 
functions which it is impossible for the prisoner to 
perform, such functions as those dealing with the 


relation of the prison community to the outside 
world, must be performed by a well-regulated pur- 
chasing department. The goods, supplies, and other 
commodities which may be sold to other institutions 
must be under the control of a competent bureau 
which will keep the prison community supplied with 
orders and be responsible for delivery. Expert 
advice must be available as to the best methods for 
providing work for the men not only in lines where the 
produce is transferable to other institutions, but also 
in the maintenance work of the community. Should 
the prison possess farm acreage, the most approved 
methods of scientific farming should be applied both 
to afford the best training to men who may continue 
as farmers and to produce foodstuffs for the inmates 
of the institution. A well-balanced and properly 
prepared diet is essential, and an efficiently run 
institution with coordination between the culinary 
and farm departments will give appreciable result 
in the improved physical condition of the inmates. 

The efficient organization of farm and industrial 
work will give opportunity to observe the varying 
contributions made by members of the prison com- 
munity to the community. The profit from their 
work will become an asset which should result in a 
self-adjusting wage scale. The plan of paying this 
wage in "Token Money" is based upon administra- 
tive needs in that it insures the divorcing of the prison 
community from the general community, except in 
so far as the redemption of currency in United 
States coinage is permitted and guided by the 
administrative authorities. 


The development of a model administration based 
upon the community idea will necessitate growth by 
slow stages and by the education of both the prison 
community and the administrative staff. The fail- 
ure most business men encounter when attempting 
to establish business administration in a govern- 
mental situation is that they do not realize that 
political life is hedged about by many limitations 
which are foreign to general industrial enterprises. 
The generation which has profited by prison graft 
must pass away before many of the new ideals can be 
attained. What is needed is a practical program, 
a determined endeavor, and a constant appeal to 
the best part of the community to support the prop- 
osition. These are parts of an adequate prison 
administration and call not only for an enlightened 
leadership, but a confirmed conviction upon the part V 
of the men in prison and those going out of prison, 
that the prison administration is tending more and 
more to meet the test that the human material which 
is sent to the prisons for reshaping shall come forth 
the better for the refining process. As long as this 
conviction persists it will stay the hand of politics 
and corruption and make possible the business admin- 
istration of the prison. 



Former Warden, Sing Sing Prison, New York 


Treasurer, Connecticut State Reformatory 




IN June, 1913, the Governor of the State of New 
York appointed a Commission on Prison Reform for 
the purpose of studying the different State institu- 
tions and suggesting desirable changes in what 
every one agreed was a mournful and unmitigated 
failure the prison system. The Commission was 
organized with Thomas Mott Osborne, former 
Mayor of Auburn and former Public Service Com- 
missioner, as Chairman ; Professor George W. 
Kirchwey, Dean of the Columbia University Law 
School, as Vice-Chairman ; and Doctor E. Stagg 
Whitin, of the National Committee on Prisons and 
Prison Labor, as Secretary. 

In the fall of the year (1913), the chairman spent 
a week as a voluntary prisoner in Auburn, to study 
at close quarters the system and methods then exist- 
ing in the prisons and their effect upon the inmates. 
The most important result of the experience was the 
growth of a new feeling of confidence toward the 
Commission on the part of the prisoners leading to 
a desire on their part to cooperate in a new effort 
to reform the prison system. 



ORGANIZATION. In response to a request from the 
inmates of Auburn Prison, Warden Rattigan, with 
the approval of the Superintendent of Prisons 
himself a member of the Commission on Prison Re- 
form permitted the formation of a good conduct 
league, to be officered and managed by the inmates. 
On December 26, 1913, a committee on organization 
was elected by the prisoners ; in January an organi- 
zation was perfected, and on Lincoln's birthday, 
February 12, 1914, the first meeting of the Mutual 
Welfare League was held at Auburn. A year later 
the League was extended to Sing Sing Prison. 

No one knew what the League could do its 
activities were absolutely in the hands of the prison 
authorities. It has never asked nor claimed the right 
to act except under the consent and close super- 
vision of the warden, and subject to his proper 
authority. The organization of the League is simple. 
Each company at Sing Sing Prison each industrial 
or maintenance unit elects one or more represent- 
atives to be the governing body of the League, 
the Board of Delegates. These elections must be 
free, without pressure or dictation from the authori- 
ties, else the men would lose faith in their represent- 
atives. The Board of Delegates, fifty-five in num- 
ber (forty-nine in Auburn) elects a secretary of the 
League, and from its own number an executive com- 
mittee of nine. The Executive Committee appoints 
as many assistants as it may deem necessary to keep 
good order and discipline in the prison. 

Each member of the Executive Board is a member 
of one of the nine subcommittees; Membership, 


Industries, Hygiene, Education, Athletics, Enter- 
tainment, Music, Visitors, and Outside Employ- 

Every afternoon when there are any cases, court 
is held and all matters involving infraction of the 
rules of the prison or of the League or any violation 
of good order and discipline are brought before the 
judiciary board. The members preside in turn and a 
majority decides. The procedure is very simple and 
punishment consists of suspension from the League, 
with a consequent loss of all privileges. An appeal 
can be made in any case by any party to the warden's 
court, where the warden, the principal keeper, and 
the doctor hear and determine all matters brought 
before them from the inmates' court. 

PRIVILEGES. The privileges granted to the League 
at Sing Sing have been numerous, the fundamental 
one of self-government within practical bounds being 
the most important. Elections of delegates are held 
every four months ; and the prisoners are expected 
to vote without dictation or direction of the prison 
authorities, except that all arrangements are at all 
times subject to the convenience of the prison man- 

The discipline of the prison is now largely in the 
hands of the League. The guards in the mess-hall, 
the workshops, the school, and chapel have been 
withdrawn. But while it has been found unnecessary 
to keep so many idle officers inside the prison, the 
guards on the walls have been increased. 

The ridiculous and futile system of silence has been 
abolished. Conversation between inmates is allowed 


except under such natural restrictions as would exist 
in any well-regulated factory. 

After work hours there is a period of relaxation, 
during which, within proper limits, the men are free. 
Baseball and the swimming pool are the favorite 
recreations in the summer, and walking in the winter. 

After supper the afternoon count is taken in the 
cells, after which the educational classes and evening 
lectures and entertainments take place. All mem- 
bers of the League in good standing may attend. 

AIMS. Such are the simple methods of the League. 
As will be seen, the particular details are compara- 
tively unimportant. What is of vital consequence 
is the self-government. Human society rests upon 
the ability of the great majority of mankind to gov- 
ern themselves. Men whose comings and goings 
have to be regulated constantly from outside them- 
selves, who have no well-developed power of choice 
between good and evil, are properly sent to prison 
because they are unable to get along in a world which 
is too free for them to act wisely in. 

The old prison system endeavors, by harsh and v 
brutal treatment, to make such men respect author- 
ity and reform their ways, by becoming obedient 
automatons, moving only according to the will of an 
authority outside themselves. The result was and 
always will be failure ; for when the man leaves 
prison he will again be free ; there will be no author- 
ity outside himself to direct his ways, except once 
more the police and the courts. 

The so-called "honor system" endeavors, by 
sentimental, kindly treatment, to make such men 


respect authority and reform their ways, by becom- 
ing obedient automatons, moving only according 
to the will of an authority outside themselves. The 
result is, and always will be, failure ; for when a man 
leaves prison he will again be free ; there will be no 
authority outside himself to direct his ways, except 
once more, the police and the courts. 

In other words the "honor system" results, as the 
old brutal system results, in men who have not been 
exercised in initiative, self-control, power to resist 
temptation; and unless these men have been so 
exercised, they are not fit to return to the world. 

The sole aim of the Mutual Welfare League is to 
prepare men for real life in the free society of the 
world outside. That is all. It does not advocate 
privileges unless the privileges can be used to 
develop a sense of responsibility. It does not care 
for entertainments unless they can be used as a 
means to an end and that end self -discipline. It 
does not seek luxuries of any kind; it cannot be 
bribed by a promise of mere comforts for the body ; 
for it knows that unless the conscience be quickened 
there is no such thing as ultimate freedom. 

Over against the brutality of the old system and the 
sentimentality of the "honor system" and the moral, 
mental, and physical pauperizing involved in both, 
the Mutual Welfare League sets the "square deal" 
which throws each upon his own resources and 
upon his own responsibility and holds him strictly 
to it. 

It does not coddle the prisoner, but asks genuine, 
human sympathy for him. 


It does not gush over him, but tells him to be a 
man and to fight his own battles. 

It does not crush his spirit, but encourages his 
loyalty to his pals and to the community. 

It does not brutalize him; it provides means of 
training and education so that he may make of him- 
self an efficient and honest worker. 

It does not wish to produce good prisoners, it aims 
to train good citizens.} 


THE State of Connecticut, some seven years ago, 
appropriated nearly half a million dollars for a mod- 
ern reformatory. It was planned that this reforma- 
tory should house six hundred and should make it 
possible to separate men and boys between the ages 
of eighteen and twenty-five, who were convicted for 
the first time, from confinement in company with 
men who had been imprisoned before and might be 
considered real criminals. 

It is interesting to note that since its creation the 
Board of Directors five representative men of 
Connecticut, chosen to guide the destinies of this 
reformatory has been kept intact ; these men, 
with no political affiliations whatever nor financial 
recompense, have given their personal services not 
only to the selection of the location and supervision 
of the erection of the building, but also to the 
development and policy of the reformatory. The 
work has been of absorbing and increasing interest. 
The Board has been united in the high ambition for 
efficiency, honesty, and nobler ideals, and was fortu- 


nate in having had associated with it in the organiza- 
tion of the work one of the ablest superintendents in 
this country, and one of the foremost men in penal 
work Mr. Albert Garvin^ 

The old methods of government were in vogue 
during the first year of the existence of the reforma- 
tory which opened its doors in July, 1913. At the 
end of this time the new method of self-government, 
as originated and installed in Auburn Prison by the 
Honorable Thomas Mott Osborne, began to inter- 
est the Directors of the Connecticut Reformatory. 
One of the Directors was a friend of Mr^Osborne's, 
and with others of the Board went to Auburn at 
Mr. Osborne's request to study the working-out 
of the self-government theory through the so-called 
Mutual Welfare League. This League had been in 
operation about six months, but the results which 
had been accomplished, not only in increased effi- 
ciency in the work in the prison shops, but also in the 
morale of the men, and the astonishing cooperation 
which the warden received, had begun to be noticed 
by the public at large. It was decided to try for 
the boys at Cheshire some of the self-government 

There was reasonable doubt in the minds of the 
Board, and of the superintendent, as to the capabil- 
ity of boys of this age to organize and manage intel- 
ligently a system such as that of the Mutual Welfare 
League at Auburn. However, after the boys had 
been called together and had been told how the 
League was operated and some of the privileges 
granted, also the results accomplished at Auburn, 


they became most anxious for an opportunity to 
put into effect a similar plan. Delegates were elected 
from the different departments of the reformatory 
and they in turn elected their officers. 

The first meeting of the Board of Control, so-called, 
of the Cheshire Branch of the Mutual Welfare 
League, was a memorable one to the Directors of the 
reformatory. The boys, although imperfectly organ- V 
ized, saw that by their efforts and by their good be- 
havior they could ask and obtain certain privileges, 
never dreamed of under the old form of prison dis- 
cipline^ The two most important factors in a League 
of this kind are : first, the ability of the inmates to 
manage themselves without the constant supervision 
of the officers in charge of the prison ; and, second, 
the privileges, the request for which must originate 
with the inmates, who must show themselves equal 
to the increased responsibility imposed when such 
privileges are conferred. 

The Constitution and By-Laws of the Auburn 
League were taken over by the Cheshire Branch as a 
guide. These were rewritten to meet the require- 
ments of Cheshire, and at once the boys were fired 
by an enthusiasm to raise the standards in all depart- 
ments of the institution. Previous to this, for 
example, on Sunday afternoons the boys were locked 
in their cells, as they are to-day in most prisons. 
The superintendent of the reformatory at Cheshire 
granted the boys the freedom of the cell house for 
some three hours on Sunday afternoon, during which 
time the conduct of the inmates was guarded by the 
officers and delegates of the League, only one repre- 


sentative of the reformatory staff being on hand, in 
case of disturbance. The privilege not only of walk- 
ing around and visiting with one another but also of 
securing suitable books to read, and writing letters, 
means much to the boys, especially as Sunday had 
previously been a day to be dreaded. 

The next privilege was marching to meals with 
music under the care of their own officers. Saturday 
afternoon sports and Sunday morning recreation after 
religious services were then granted under the same 
jurisdiction, while the request for certain entertain- 
ments followed. 

Bad language and petty brawls which naturally 
are to be expected were reduced to a minimum. 
In addition, the Directors of the reformatory found 
that all dope as well as liquor was kept out of the 
reformatory. The delegates were interested in carry- 
ing out the wishes of the several departments they 
represented, but as might be expected among men 
and boys of this age, politics have from time to time 
interfered with the best success of the League. The 
elections to the Board of Control have been hotly 
contested, and on account of parole and the changing 
population, new officers are elected oftener than is 

The parole of the boys is placed in the hands of the 
Directors of the reformatory, and the Board of 
Parole receives at its monthly meeting recommen- 
dations from the Mutual Welfare League as to the 
behavior and the standing of those boys who are 
eligible for parole, and also suggestions as to restora- 
tion of time for good conduct. The results obtained 


are remarkable : the boys feel that they have oppor- 
tunity to be heard by the Board of Directors, and 
the Board of Parole, and that their truthful represen- 
tation of conditions is conscientiously considered. 

It must be understood that in the organization of 
such a government it is not possible simply to decide 
on this form of government without the personal 
touch of those in charge of the institution. The 
many questions which naturally arise in such a 
movement must have not only the careful judgment 
of those responsible for control of the institution but 
also the touch of sympathy and interest. The men 
and boys are human, and nothing appeals to them as 
does the assurance that those who are watching their 
conduct have a friendly interest in them. 

There are many questions which this form of 
government brings up, for example, the tobacco 
question. It had been decided that smoking should 
not be permitted in the reformatory, and much dis- 
turbance came from the boys smoking despite this 
rule. The amount of tobacco that was brought into 
the institution was astounding, the boys securing 
it in the most unexpected ways. In the spring of 
1915, through the efforts of one of the Directors, the 
Highway Commissioner, with the consent of the 
Governor of the State, accepted boys for road work. 
These boys were paid fifty cents per day, and the 
money that they made was either sent to their 
families at their request or kept as a credit until they 
should be discharged. Men working on the high- 
way, on motors, trolley cars, and the public in general 
felt that they were rendering a kindness to the boys 


by throwing them tobacco. This the boys naturally 
accepted, and when they thought they were not 
observed, would, as they express it, "Hike a smoke." 
When caught they would plead to be allowed to 
smoke. The question has greatly interested the 
Directors, for, on one hand, it is argued that most 
boys who have been sent to the institution have been 
smokers and will smoke no matter what rules are 
made; and, on the other hand, it is argued that 
boys who have not smoked should not be taught to 
do so at the reformatory. However, it is probable 
that the Mutual Welfare League will petition the 
Directors to grant the boys the privilege of smoking 
at certain periods of the day, and at other times 
severe penalty will be meted out to those who 
infringe the rules. 

The League requested that in the dining room the 
boys be allowed to talk. This was granted, and in 
addition, men who had reached the honor grade 
were allowed to dine at their own tables, with table- 
cloths, etc., and the pride which they take in being 
treated as'gentlemen is remarkable. At these tables 
the boys have certain delicacies, such as extra sugar 
and pickles, which the other boys do not have. 
During the meal they are officered by their own 
officers, with only one of the guards in attendance, 
to be present in case of disturbance. The most inter- 
esting current topics are posted on the bulletin boards 
so that the boys while at their meals may have in 
their minds something worth talking about. 

The relieved anxiety of the guards as to disturb- 
ance is a marked aspect of the self-government 


system. In other words, the officers in case of trouble 
know to which of the inmates to turn in fact, most 
disturbances are taken care of by the inmates without 
attention from the officers. 

There are three grades in the reformatory : first, 
second, and third. The boys are received in the 
second grade, and according to their behavior are 
advanced to the first grade, or if disobedient to the 
rules of the institution they are reduced to the third 
grade. The Mutual Welfare League assumes no 
responsibility over the third-grade boys, who are 
taken care of by the prison authorities, but the 
League does recommend that certain boys be re- 
stored to the second grade from the third. 

The Inmates' Court, in which all infringements of 
rules are tried, is one of the most important features 
of the self-government system, for none of us will 
deny that the men who are confined in prison have a 
better knowledge of each other than any one else has, 
and if through their own officers they can settle, 
punish, or adjust any infractions of rules, the feeling 
of revenge is not so manifest as it would be if this 
punishment were given by State officers. 

Self-government must be developed little by little 
from the bottom up, not from the authorities in power 
down to the prisoners. Each institution, as far as it 
is possible, should present to its inmates the oppor- 
tunity to suggest and the opportunity to form an 
organization which may be directed when neces- 
sary by the officials so that the inmates may feel 
that they have a real part in the work of manage- 
ment, and that they, through their own officers, are 


responsible for the work and conduct of the men or 

In the self-government plan as much liberty is ^ 
given as the men are capable of handling. As with 
a child who is allowed to walk as its strength develops, 
so with the self-government of prisoners; they are 
made to feel that as fast as they are capable of carry- 
ing out certain plans they are welcomed by the officers 
and other opportunities given. Instead of the 
sullen, hangdog look we find under the old prison 
system, we see to-day a bright, hopeful expression 
on the faces of the prisoners, and a belief in the future 
that they will be an important factor in the com- 
munity to which they will return. 

Those who from the outside have regarded the 
prison or reformatory as a place to be dreaded or 
shunned, cannot fail to be impressed by the atmos- 
phere which can be observed in institutions where 
this self-government is in vogue. They should com- 
pare this system with the system of handling the so- 
called criminal classes to be found in most States 

It is only a question of time until the old prison v 
methods are entirely obliterated. In fact those who 
have studied prison conditions in this country are 
amazed at the thought that they have been allowed 
to continue at all in this present day of enlighten- 
ment, j 

It is true that there are men confined in our penal 
institutions who are unworthy of effort to restore 
them to society, but the great majority of men are in v 
prison through misfortune, or hereditary conditions, 


or on account of crimes committed under the in- 
fluence of drink, and these men are willing and glad 
to grasp the opportunity to show that they welcome 
and desire some kind of a chance to make good, and 
to be able to return and take their place in society. 

It is not necessary, in establishing self-government, J 
to surrender, as many people ridiculously suppose, 
the management of the prison to the prisoners; 
it merely means that in the government of the prison 
the men or boys have a part which they play in 
establishing not only good order, but also efficiency 
in the work that they perform,. No manufacturer 
who has not the active cooperation and support 
of the people whom he employs gets the maximum 
amount of production, and how can any one suppose 
that a prison, which must be made to pay its own 
expenses as far as possible, can get good results 
without the cooperation of the inmates ? 

In closing, I must beg those who may read this 
chapter to do one thing, and that is not to put the 
self-government idea aside without a personal inves- 
tigation of conditions in one of the institutions where 
it exists. They will be convinced, I feel sure, in 
spite of the many improvements still needed and the 
errors still existing, that when compared with the old 
system, the new method of handling men in prison 
has so much in its favor that it must be everywhere 
adopted. 1 

1 Editor's Note. This article was written in 1915, and describes 
conditions at the Cheshire Reformatory at that time. 


Former Principal Keeper, Sing Sing Prison, New York 



TWENTY years of prison service under the old 
system and two years under the new have convinced 
the writer that the new prison system is as beneficial 
to the officers as to the men, that it is based on 
sound common sense and will grow stronger and 
stronger as officers and men realize more fully their 
opportunity under it? " The soundness of these con- 
clusions will be admitted by one familiar with the 
daily life and duties of the prison officer under the 
old system and under the new, which is my excuse 
for the following rather detailed account. 

The prison officer receives no special training be- 
fore entering upon his duties. He is appointed after 
civil service examination in which emphasis is placed 
on his height, age, and physical condition generally 
and upon " great personal courage, a kindly but firm 
disposition, sound judgment and discretion, inclina- 
tion to carry out the orders of a superior faithfully, 
and a personality and temperament calculated to 
command respect and obedience of persons in their 
custody." 1 

1 State of New York, The Civil Service Commission, "Manual of 
Examination for Prison and Reformatory Guard." 



The possession of these characteristics, well enough 
in their way, can never take the place of that special- 
ized training received by the teacher, the physician, 
or lawyer. The prison officer enters upon his duties 
ignorant of how to meet the problems which hourly 
present themselves ; too often he covers his ignorance 
by roughness, which in addition to the deadly monot- 
ony of his daily duties leaves him, at the end of a 
few years, a "bully" or at best a machine with little 
human sympathy or understanding. 

At Sing Sing Prison, New York, the day began 
for the officer under the old system when he un- 
locked his one gallery, counted his men, and, as the 
turn for his squad came, took them to the shop to 
wash up and on to the mess-hall to breakfast, the 
men being under his eye at all times and not allowed - 
to speak while at their meal. 

The officer simply could not be on friendly terms 
with the inmates, and was taught to believe that after 
a man came into State prison he didn't own the 
hair on his head. If an inmate spoke to an officer, 
the latter would yell at him loud enough to deafen 
him. If an officer had any friendly feeling and made 
any display of it, he was criticized by the other 
officers and called soft and unfit to do his duty by 
the institution. 

After breakfast the squad was marched to the shop 
at once, and work began under the strictest discipline 
until eleven-thirty, when machines were stopped 
and the men were allowed to wash up for dinner. 
The officer couldn't talk to the men, except to direct 
their work, other matters being referred to the 


authorities. The men were taken to dinner still 
under the strictest discipline and immediately after 
dinner back to the shop. 

At twelve-thirty work started again and continued 
till four. At four-thirty the men were brought to 
their cells and as they went in each man took some 
bread, under the eye of the officer who saw that he 
didn't take more than was necessary. Tea was put 
in their cells in tin cups at four-thirty and as all the 
men were not in their cells till five the tea was cold 
and unfit to drink, a constant source of irritation. 
The men had for supper nothing but tea and a few 
slices of bread unless they bought groceries or food 
boxes from outside being allowed once in two months. 
They were in their cells by five, and at five-fifteen 
the prison closed, leaving the men locked up until 
six-forty-five the next morning. 

On Sunday morning the men were brought out at 
six-forty-five and taken to the mess-hall for break- 
fast and from there to the chapel, to the Protestant 
or Catholic service. All were required to attend one 
service or the other, tea being served to them before 
service. The services were over by nine-forty-five 
when the men were given a pan of rice or prunes and a 
slice of bread : that was supposed to do for dinner 
and supper and until the next morning. They were 
kept in their cells all day Sunday until six-forty-five 
Monday morning. You can imagine the state of 
the men on Monday morning after having been 
locked in their cells for nearly twenty-four hours. 
They were cross, irritable, and hard to manage on 
Monday : much more so when there was a holiday 


on Saturday, as then the length of time in their cells 
was doubled. 

We had considerable trouble with "dope" which 
reached the prison through different channels. 
Some of the men were constantly under the influence 
of a drug. Even when kept in confinement in their 
cells and only taken out once a week for a bath, 
they found some way to obtain "dope." 

A large number of men were constantly locked in 
the lower cells for punishment, sometimes for thirty 
days or even longer, without exercise, meals being 
served to them in their cells. There was a constant 
fight with these men from morning till night to try 
to keep them under control. After being locked up 
for thirty days they were interviewed by the officials, 
and if it was considered wise were again returned 
to their cells ; otherwise they were sent back to work 
in the shops and if their work was not well done they 
went to the cells for a longer period. 

The officer was just a mere machine under the old 
system, and if he had any kindly feeling in his heart 
he was subject to discipline by the prison authorities. 

Under the new prison system the men are counted 
in the morning at six-thirty. Immediately after the 
count the officers unlock the doors and turn the men 
over to the officers of the Mutual Welfare League 
who take them to the shops to wash up for breakfast. 
After breakfast they have ten minutes' recreation 
to smoke in the yards before going to the shops to 
begin their day's work.! Officers of the Mutual 
Welfare League are in charge during working hours 
except in a few shops where it is absolutely necessary 


to have an officer give out material or keep account 
of the goods and in the storehouse and shipping 

At no time does an officer march with the men; 
wherever they wish to go they are in charge of a Mu- 
tual Welfare League Officer. There, is no restriction 
on their speech other than would be imposed in an 
ordinary factory.) 

After dinner the men again have ten minutes in 
which to smoke, then the whistle blows and they 
return to the shops and work until four o'clock. 
The whistle sounds again and the men go to the 
yard for recreation until five. At five the whistle 
sounds again and they go to the shops and form in 
companies to march to the mess-hall for supper. 
After supper they go to their cells for the count which 
takes from fifteen to twenty minutes. Then the 
men who are members of the several classes are let 
out and go to their classrooms. At eight o'clock 
all the men who desire may go to the chapel to a 
lecture, concert or moving-picture show, which 
generally lasts until about ten o'clock. Then they 
go to their cells for the night and the prison closes 
about ten-thirty. 

Saturday afternoon is a half-holiday, the prison 
ball team often playing a visiting team. All kinds 
of sports are enjoyed, especially swimming in "the 
pool" where two hundred can swim at one time. 
They are allowed one hour in the pool so all may 
have a chance to bathe once during the afternoon 
and again on Sunday afternoon. 

On Sunday morning the men turn out at six-thirty 


and march to the mess-hall for breakfast which lasts 
until about eight o'clock. All who wish to attend 
the Catholic service go directly to the chapel, the 
Catholic service being the first for the day and usu- 
ally lasting about an hour. The rest of the men may 
go to the yard during the time of service. 

At eight-forty-five the bugle is sounded and those 
who wish to attend the Protestant service fall in line, 
under an officer of the Mutual Welfare League, and 
march to the chapel where the service begins 
promptly at nine. The third service for the day is 
the Christian Science. The men are free to attend 
any one of these services but are not compelled to do 
so unless they desire. 

At the sound of the bugle at twelve the men fall in 
line, not, as on week days, from the shops, but from 
their respective galleries. They are marched under 
Mutual Welfare League officers to the mess-hall and 
as on week days after dinner they go to the yard 
for sports until five o'clock. At five o'clock the 
bugle sounds, and they fall in line for supper. At 
about seven o'clock the classes begin and are gener- 
ally followed by some entertainment in the chapel 
which lasts until ten o'clock. 

The men return to their work on Monday morning 
in a pleasant frame of mind and jump at their work 
with a will not with a grouch or in fault-finding 
mood as under the old system. 

It must be understood that during the hours in the 
dining room not one officer is present, except of course 
the chef, the men being entirely in charge of officers 
of the League. 



Under the new system the prison officers work only 
eight hours, instead of working from twelve to four- 
teen hours as they formerly did. They are divided 
into three shifts instead of two, and their chief duty 
is to see that no man goes beyond the boundaries of 
the prison. The officers who were formerly armed 
have voluntarily discarded even their clubs and are 
on very friendly terms with the men. Often now in 
cases of sickness or trouble the officers take personal 
charge and see that their prisoners get proper care 
and in many cases bring delicacies from their own 
homes for a man in trouble; under the old system 
an officer would have been discharged for attempt- 
ing anything like this. His nose was always at the 
grindstone and if he did not report a prisoner he 
would be reported himself, and at the end of the day 
was not human if he was not nervous and a grouch. 
Now the officer has more time with his family and as 
his nerves are not constantly on edge he enjoys this 
time and so does his family. 

When first the new system was inaugurated, I had 
little faith in it, but it has stood the test and I am con- 
vinced that the men are better under it, the officers 
are happier under it, and the officers' families are 
grateful for it. 




Director of Agricultural and Industrial Education, New York State 
Department of Education, and Professor of Vocational Education, 
Teachers College, Columbia University 


WHILE I am very glad to contribute a chapter on 
industrial training for the prisoner, I must ask that 
the topic assigned be considered in its relationship to 
the whole question of prison reform. I cannot con- 
ceive of a prison system of industrial training which is 
not a part of the educational system. Furthermore, 
it is useless to think of the reorganization of prison 
industries from the standpoint of their training value 
without taking into consideration the relationship 
which the educational and vocational work of the 
prison bears to the whole question of prison ideals 
and efficiency. 

I appreciate that there are many difficulties in es- 
tablishing a new educational and vocational system 
in prisons. The clientele, taken as a whole, is not 
particularly interested either in shop work or book 
work. Many of the men and women are unskilled, 
with irregular habits of work, and with a vitality 
lowered before entering the prison. We know that 
the incentive for good work is lacking, that men are 
called away from the shops for considerable periods 
of time for medical attention, to meet the chaplain, 
to receive relatives, and for numerous other things 
which break in upon steady productive employment 
or upon other activities which may be or might be 



educational. We know that men are drafted from 
one prison to another, that the prison term for some 
is too short to do effective work, while for others it^ 
is so long that the inmates are discouraged or dis- 
inclined to profit by useful and productive study or 

We know that the productive incentive is not only 
lacking on the part of the men, but also very often 
on the part of the prison officials, or at least on the 
part of the shop foremen. The latter are not in com- 
petition with business. The output of the shop is 
seldom at its peak load. The inmates are, perhaps, 
not only inclined to lie down on the job, but the 
prison methods, whether initiated by the prison itself 
or emanating from some official higher up, are sure 
to make it quite impossible to conduct the shops on 
a business basis. 

It is perfectly obvious to any one that in a good 
many prisons there are very few shop activities 
in which the men are engaged which can be followed 
after they leave prison. Men are assigned to jobs in 
a perfectly haphazard manner, sometimes because a 
particular shop needs some men and not at all be- 
cause these men and women have chosen the par- 
ticular work represented by that shop while in prison 
or will necessarily follow that work after they leave. 
It is not a bit of an overstatement to say that these 
people are really forming habits of idleness rather 
than of work, and when they do form habits of work 
they are learning under methods and machinery 
which are often antiquated and produce a low quality 
of workmanship. 


As I have already said, I appreciate these difficult 
ties and it is fair to ask, for what are these men and 
women in prison? What purpose has society? 
Are they there to be punished, exploited, redeemed, 
or ruined? Are they to become more dependent 
than ever upon society through so-called reformative 
methods which make them more dependent, or are 
these mentally or morally or vocationally defective 
people to be redeemed into a state of economic, 
social, and civic independence? If they are to be 
punished, I can imagine no worse punishment than to 
be put to work on a type of work in which one has no 
interest and in which there is no outlook, and for 
which one is not fitted. If they are to be exploited, 
I can suggest no better type of exploitation than the 
manufacturing of articles for the State to be sold in 
the open market for State profit, when such articles 
have absolutely no relationship to the educational, 
vocational, or reformative needs of the people who 
make them. If these imprisoned people are to be 
ruined, I can think of no better way to destroy a 
man who enters prison industrially and commer- 
cially capable along certain productive lines than 
to assign him in prison to lines of labor which have 
no relationship to what he did before he came in or 
what he can do after he leaves. But if these people 
are to be redeemed, then we must know and appre- 
ciate some aim for prison industry and education, 
We must be able to adjust the educational and 
vocational purposes and methods of the new prison 
to meet the new requirements of prison schools and 


My program, therefore, rests entirely upon the 
proposition that the educational and vocational sys- 
tem of a prison is but a part of a larger progress for 
making, through every activity within and without 
the prison walls, dependent men and women into 
independent members of society. In other words, 
the prison system is to be a big educational, social, 
and industrial enterprise to make physically, men- 
tally, vocationally, and spiritually new men and 
women. It should be the business of the prison to 
so organize its work as to make these very dependent 
people into independent individuals. They, more 
than any other type, require that every prison ac- 
tivity contribute towards changing them from de- 
pendents into independents. It is essential that all 
their educational work be made more or less directly 
productive and that all their activity work be made 
educational. It is expected that all the vocational 
work be projected into the useful useful in the de- 
velopment of physical health, of moral character, of 
intellectual capacity, and of socialized citizenship. 
It is expected that all productive work will react 
in the physical, mental, moral, and social develop- 
ment of the prison. 

A prison has a greater opportunity in many ways . 
than the public school, for it has twenty-four hours 
a day program a program which may be divided 
up on the basis of five aims. First, the development 
of vital efficiency. This concerns the physical 
side of the prisoner and is related to the prison work 
which is chosen for him or which he chooses in that 
the labor must be in accord with his strength and with 


conditions making for increased health. Second, 
vocational efficiency along the lines of the industrial, 
agricultural, commercial, or professional. This will 
be taken up in detail later. Third, civic efficiency 
or fellowship, and the very best way to develop this 
type of efficiency is through some form of self-govern- 
ment. The public schools are finding that they^ 
cannot train boys and girls for citizenship by study- 
ing dates, reigns of political parties, times and 
places of battles, or even mere book lessons on civics. 
The public schools are reaching out to incorporate 
somehow into their school activities the spirit of self- 
government. These young people have not been 
tested in self-government and the time for such 
testing does not come until they meet the conditions 
imposed by society and their fellow beings. The 
prisoners have been tested and have been found 
wanting, and this want can never be met any more 
than the public schools can teach through preach- 
ments about civic duties and individual rights and 
community needs. Some good people would impose 
still more preaching systems on the public school 
children instead of some system of practical govern- 
ment, and I suppose like-minded persons would ad- 
vocate lesson leaflets to be distributed to the prison- 
ers on how to be good citizens. But the best way 
to learn how is to learn to be, and the best way to 
be, is to have the chance to be, and to have the best 
chance is to participate in some type of self-govern- 

Fourth, moral and social service efficiency. The 
pedagogy which has been given in the preceding para- 


graph applies here equally well. One does not 
learn how to be good by having some one stand over 
him with a club. Genuine goodness is not generated 
in a dark cell. " Do good and make good " is the only 
way to make goodness. People are never made good 
any way. They make themselves good, and so I 
am led right back to the principle of some form of 

Fifth, avocational efficiency, which means the 
right use of leisure where men get the habit of using 
their leisure profitably the habit of reading in the 
evening, the habit of going to good prison entertain- 
ments, the habit of electing whether one wants to 
stay in his cell and read, or go to a "movie ", or go 
to a class in book work, or to some evening vocational 
work. In this way prisoners will learn to be masters 
of their leisure and to choose in one form or another 
a type of recreation or study, but one can have no 
choice when he is locked in his cell after the working 
hours are over. How, by such a system, does society 
develop initiative and judgment as to the use of 
one's free time ? 

I should not speak of these general things which 
may seem to some to be apart from the title of the 
chapter except, as I have already implied, that I 
must think of a prison as being somehow a social, 
or perhaps a better term would be a civic, unit in 
itself. It takes in at its back door human and 
material products and by thoughts, manipulations, 
and expressions of each makes them both over for 
larger social and economic needs. The wood comes 
in as a raw product; it goes out as an office desk. 


The prisoner comes in as a knotty problem ; he goes 
out as a useful and productive citizen. Now the 
prison, like a community, has its civic work to be per- 
formed. It has people to be fed, clothed, housed, 
instructed, governed, and guided. Each person in a 
city finds opportunity, or ought to be able to find it, 
to express himself and to contribute to the well- 
being and conduct of the community. Some hold 
positions of responsibility and direction. Others 
are directed in a narrow field of work. Of course 
there is some injustice in the way the cities are 
governed. There are individual failings and indif- 
ferent rewards, but taken as a whole, .is there not a 
recognition of service and opportunity for advance- 
ment and free choice of occupation and the normal 
finding of vocational levels ? If the community offers 
this freedom, why should not a prison, which is to 
fit people for this freedom ? If a community takes 
into account the vital, normal, social, industrial, 
vocational, and avocational efficiency of its citizens 
and considers these elements collectively, why should 
not a prison system think of these types of efficiency 
collectively and not as separate and independent or 
neglected units? 

We hear a good deal these days about the Gary 
plan in the public schools, that is, the system used in 
Gary of dividing the activities of the school into three 
heads : work, play, and study. I am thinking that 
the prison system might adopt the same spirit of a 
fair division of the activities into : first, useful, prof- 
itable, and productive labor ; second, health-giving, 
morally uplifting, and socially serviceable recreation ; 


and third, book work related to the activity work in 
the institution where correlation will be profitable, 
or, book work dealing with the primary needs of the 
illiterate prisoner at one extreme, or with the intel- 
lectual desires of men already intellectually trained, 
at the other. These three divisions of time would 
vary with the seasons and with the weather condi- 
tions. They would recognize holidays, days of 
religious observances, the seasons, and so on. But 
generally speaking there would be some set division 
of time for the activities under each head as are con- 
sidered in any well developed educational institution, 
and I take it, .that is primarily what a prison is : a 
great educational enterprise. 

Nothing in the prison causes me more concern 
than that there seems to be such a large number 
of men and women employed in what are commonly 
called the maintenance occupations men and 
women who are cleaning, scrubbing, washing, cook- 
ing, running errands, doing chores, and so on. Un- 
questionably most of this work, as it is arranged, at 
least, does not fit a man or woman for employment 
after release. I appreciate that it is necessary to 
carry on these maintenance occupations and that 
there is need of food to be cooked, halls to be cleaned, 
and dishes to be washed, but I insist that this sort of 
work is to be done as quickly and effectively as 
possible, not so much as tasks, but as duties neces- 
sary to the social welfare of the institution. There is 
little or no educational or vocational value in such 
work, but it can be made to have its social value. 
We must remember that there is a vast difference 


between being a washer of dishes or a peeler of pota- 
toes, and being trained as an expert cook. There is 
a large difference between service as a waitress at a 
prison dining table and being trained at expert serv- 
ice at table work in a private family. I would 
separate most definitely service in necessary institu- 
tional duties from training for service in vocational 
life outside of the prison. There is a legitimate field 
for the ordinary institutional duties when properly 
handled, but this field is clearly outside that of voca- 
tional training. For example, take a woman's 
prison. To train these women to be waitresses, 
laundresses, cooks, mothers' helpers, child carers, 
junior nurses, second maids, chambermaids, means 
something definite, purposeful, instructional, and 
intensive in doing through institutional activity the 
type of work demanded by the outside world. If 
a woman prisoner is to take care of some young 
children belonging to an officer, the work may have 
social content. If she is trained to take care of these 
children, her work may have educational content. 
If she does this work with the idea and is taught with 
the idea that she is to go out into the world as a nurse 
girl, then it has -vocational content. 
; There is a big difference for a male prisoner between 
cleaning out the cow barn and learning to be a dairy- 
man, or sweeping out a printing room as compared 
to being a printer's apprentice; between cobbling 
institutional shoes and working in a shoe factory on 
automatic machinery; between being ordered to 
clean up a yard and learning to become a gardener ; 
between caning chairs, weaving rugs, making willow 


baskets, and learning a profitable, useful, and decent 
trade. Some persons emphasize the importance of 
agriculture for prisoners but I would have them go 
into it with some definite vocational and educational 
aim. To have them fuss around a garden or be 
domineered over in the garden on about the same 
basis as they would cobble shoes or make cheap 
shirts is unsocial, uneducational, and non vocational. 
To have persons do garden work with the same 
amount of thought put into it and the same quality 
of teaching which they would get in a classroom if 
they were studying from books, would be to make 
their garden work most decidedly educational and 
mentally developing, but this sort of garden work 
might be educational and social without being 
vocational, and here is my point. If we expect to 
make these prisoners into farmers, we must get them 
to become farm-minded so that they will stay on the 
farm when they are placed there. To become farm- 
minded they must have definite farm work, or rather 
I should say, farm training. Full opportunity must 
be given them to discover whether or not they are 
farm-minded, and then when they are placed on a 
farm they will make good not only because they have 
been trained, but because, through a system, they 
have been selected and placed as well as trained. 

I appreciate that it is necessary to carry on main- 
tenance occupations, but I believe they should be 
thought of along two lines : first, that a good deal 
of this work should be done by men and women who 
show no skill nor any desire to be skilled ; and second, 
that every member of the prison community should 


make a small contribution, no matter what other line 
of activity he is pursuing, in furthering some of the 
necessary maintenance work of the prison. I under- 
stand that a very large percentage abnormally 
large of the inmates of prisons are engaged in 
menial tasks incident to maintenance, and yet we 
are thinking that these men are being trained for the 
workaday world and that they learn their place in 
citizenship. But what a poor sort of a community it 
would be that used the full time of more than half of 
its inhabitants in the menial tasks incident to the 
maintenance of the civic plant. 

Broadly speaking, the maintenance activities of 
the prison come under three heads : first, the social 
and necessary occupations such as dish-washing, 
cleaning, etc. They have no vocational value and 
are to be disposed of as quickly and effectively as 
possible. Second, the educational activities of cook- 
ing, caring for heating plant, expert janitorial service, 
and so on, which may have thinking and training 
values and may be so taught as to have intellectual 
development and also an educational value. Third, 
those activities which are directly vocational and 
which may be taught with this end in view : such oc- 
cupations as plumbing, tinsmithing, agriculture, 
painting, and so on. 

Perhaps agriculture and farm work offer a good 
illustration of the foregoing. I can think of men 
pulling weeds, hoeing corn, and digging potatoes as 
a social service for the prison. This work would 
be a physical benefit to many inmates and these 
activities are necessary to maintain operations. 


But if some of the men who are mentally competent 
were taught something of soils, fertilizers, plant life, 
rotation of crops, and so on, then one can see that 
they would receive intellectual training. And then 
if these men, or some of them at least, were taught 
these things and did these things in order that they 
might become farmers and were carefully instructed 
and inspired that they would become farm-minded, 
and were placed, after the expiration of their sen- 
tences, upon farms and followed up in their work, 
then one sees that the third type of training would be 
vocational. I should not for a moment think that 
I were training farmers by having inmates hoe 
corn or dig potatoes, and neither should I think I 
had made a farmer by teaching a man farming when 
I had not during the process made him so farm- 
minded that he would stay on the farm after a posi- 
tion had been obtained there for him. 

Prisoners must be paid for their work. Very few 
men, and I suppose, strictly speaking, no man, 
works without some strong incentive ranging from 
desire for food to desire to do unselfish deeds. A 
prisoner differs little in this respect from the free 
laborer. Many prisoners have a strong feeling of 
antagonism toward the State while working in the 
shops, and they vent this feeling upon the work 
which they are doing. I recall the first office desk 
which was given me when I entered on a State posi- 
tion. It was made in one of the prisons of the 
State, and I was reminded every time I attempted 
to raise the roll top or open a drawer, that the par- 
ticular prisoner or prisoners who worked on that 


article of the State must certainly have had a grouch. 
And somehow, I don't know that I exactly blame 
them. There seem to be only about two ways to 
overcome such poor workmanship : one is by pun- 
ishing a man for the poor work, and the other is by 
rewarding him for good work. The slave days of the 
old South are like the modern days in some of the old 
prisons. Booker T. Washington in his book "Work- 
ing with the Hands" says of the negro : "The race 
had been worked in slavery and the great lesson 
which the race needed to learn in freedom was to 
work. As a slave the negro was worked. As a 
freeman he must learn to work." Being worked 
means degradation working means civilization. 
If labor goes hand in hand with opportunity then 
labor has a purpose. When it is accompanied by 
denial of opportunity its effect is limiting if not actu- 
ally crushing. As I have said, there must be some 
incentive. This incentive may come from time off, 
or token money, or real money. It is very likely 
that it is inadvisable to give the prisoner actual 
money, as the opportunities afforded for corrupt use 
are many. It is clearly evident that the payment of 
some sort of wage, either in time off or token money, 
will result in profit to the State in all the productive 
work in that the prisoners will be exerting energy 
for the State instead of being against it. From the 
standpoint of the prisoner, some sort of rewarding 
system will give him responsibility and practice in 
his prison world with conditions with which he will 
deal on the outside. It is clearly evident that men 
can quickly recognize their vocational status by the 


pay envelope, and if privileges like tobacco, enter- 
tainments, buying things on the outside, special 
dinners, etc. depend upon the amount of token 
money which these men have and the latter in turn 
depends upon the type of work and the amount of 
work which they do, it is evident that these men 
would see the relationship between personal cause 
and economic effect. 

Whatever we may think of the George Junior 
Republic idea as a whole, Mr. George's idea of 
"Nothing without Labor" can never fail to impress 
us. The productive end of the prison will produce 
neither men nor things in any efficient or effective way 
until there is some way of recognizing efficiency and 
some way of letting men see themselves that un- 
skilled work, loitering, and loafing bring their just 
retribution ; and that ability to do skilled work, re- 
sponsiveness to demands made upon them, bring 
their just rewards. I would go so far as to charge up 
to the prisoner the cost of his board, his cell, the 
salaries of the guards required to watch over him. 
I would pay him in token money in proportion to the 
quality and quantity of his work. If he did skilled 
work and did it well and if the prison were disposing 
of this product and getting good value for his work, 
I would pay him, and I would pay him an amount 
such that he could live in the Waldorf Astoria end 
of the prison and have privileges inside the prison 
walls in accord with the kind of work that he does 
and the kind of man that he is. The State is 
getting something from this sort of man and it is 
quite reasonable that it give something back to him, 


that he in turn may spend it in the prison, save it 
up for use outside or send it, as he would be expected 
to, to his dependents if he has any, on the outside. 
On the other hand, if a man had to be watched con- 
stantly, which meant a large expense for guarding, 
if he were only capable or only willing to do low- 
grade work, then he would have the privileges of the 
Bowery lodge and could eat at the cafS des enfants 
end of the establishment. I have no interest in or 
any understanding of any other system of prison 
industry unless, of course, one is thinking of develop- 
ing the type of industry which is frankly punitive, 
slavish, and definitely planned to economically and 
socially ruin every prisoner it touches. 

Men should be assigned to occupations for which 
they are fitted. If they are unfitted for the skilled, 
they should be assigned to the unskilled, and as fast 
as they desire to work into the skilled, they should 
be given opportunities. And in choosing a skilled 
occupation the educational director should assist 
by a careful study of the prisoner's ability, previous 
education, previous vocation, and his present motives 
and interests. There is practically no vocational 
or educational justification for male prisoners being 
assigned to knit, mat, brush, and broom shops. 
Nearly all knitting work is done by women, and 
there is practically no labor market for mat workers. 
The same is true of the brush industry, for in the 
outside world all brush making is done by machinery. 
The broom business in institutions is very properly 
in the hands of those who are unfortunately blind. 
It is the chief outlet for the hands that see and the 



eyes that are dim. The only justification for the 
above mentioned industries is that they may make 
money for the State and may punish the inmates. 
They are frankly punitive industries and bear abso- 
lutely no relationship to the vocational or educa- 
tional. Of course some inmates who have no partic- 
ular intelligence, being practically defective, might 
be assigned to this work and paid accordingly, and 
the privileges which they would receive would be in 
accordance with the kind of work they were doing. 
It would not be very long, if a man were bright, be- 
fore he would catch the incentive of the workaday 
world and ask to be transferred to the vocational 
training department where he would learn a trade 
which would be worth while, or to some productive 
activity of a higher order which would pay him better. 
If it is discovered through psychiatric tests that a 
man is really defective, then it would be unfair 
to assign him for a long time to the type of work 
the financial rewards of which kept him down in the 
Bowery end of the prison. A mental defective 
rather likes routine work. He becomes quite adept 
in automatic motions, and it is very likely that the 
quantity of his work would be such that he would 
receive far more remuneration than those who were 
working alongside of him who were on a punitive 
basis, so that he would not be obliged to live on a 
low economic scale. 

But I am expected to give more specific details. 
This I am glad to do, although I believe that voca- 
tional and educational work in prisons is more in 
need of philosophy of purpose and method at the 


present time than it is of attention to specific details, 
especially when the material in this chapter is ex- 
pected to be applicable to any State and any type of 
correctional institution. This forbids any very 
specific statements. I suggest, however, for con- 
sideration the following : 

First. There must be some system of adminis- 
tering correctional institutions to bring to pass the 
principles already mentioned. There is need of a 
board of standardization and distribution of goods 
to be manufactured in the various correctional insti- 
tutions. There should be a State superintendent of 
industries as the executive officer of this board. 

Second. The board should find a market for in- 1 
stitutional goods. This market will be other public 
institutions such as schools, asylums, poorhouses, 
and so on. The State should require the purchase 
of these goods and there will be little difficulty in 
such purchasing if the goods are excellent in quality 
and reasonable in price. But no one wants to be 
required to purchase inferior goods out of the meager 
appropriations usually allotted to schools, asylums, 
and so on when they can obtain better goods in the 
open market. 

Third. The board of standardization must create \ 
a market by manufacturing some products which 
are not sold in the open market. For example, 
physical training in the public schools has taken an 
immense forward step within the last year. Thou- 
sands of pieces of outdoor apparatus simple and in- 
expensive must be purchased. This affords excellent 
opportunity for some correctional institution to 


make this apparatus from original designs. Or 
again, the country schools are beginning to put in 
simple domestic science equipments. Here is splen- 
did opportunity for some enterprising superintendent 
of prison industry to devise an inexpensive equip- 
ment consisting of a demonstration table, alcohol 
stove, tinware, and so on; something which could 
be sold to the schools at an expense ranging from 
twenty -five to fifty dollars. 

Fourth. It must be kept in mind that the indus-^ 
tries must be of such a nature that the prisoner on 
release will be fitted for some useful line of occupa- 
tion, and the industries undertaken must be of such 
a nature that the State will derive financial advan- 
tage from their pursuit. 

Fifth. The State must develop some working 
plan of coordination and cooperation of all the in- 
dustrial work of charitable and correctional insti- 
tutions financed in whole or in part by public money. 
For example, the schools for the blind should have 
the monopoly of brush and broom making. A 
prison located in the dairying district should have 
the monopoly of producing condensed milk, cheese, 
and so on. An institution located near a large city 
would naturally have a good portion of its vocational 
equipment devoted to sheet metal work, machine 
shop practice, plumbing, and so on. 

Sixth. Each institution must have an educational 
director or a supervisor of shop work. Some institu- 
tions require two officials, but all institutions having 
only one will require that the one employed com- 
bines the industrial and educational spirit of prison 


work. If the prison has two officials who are directly 
concerned with the educational and vocational work, 
one must be of the manufacturing, executive type 
an organizer of men. The other associated with him 
and of equal rank and working directly with him 
should be an educational director who knows edu- 
cational and vocational needs and who knows the 
opportunities open to men and women after they 
leave prison; who knows how to train inmates for 
these opportunities and who has ability in analyzing 
the vocational and educational needs of individual 
prisoners, and who can follow up their progress in 
the various shops. 

Seventh. The educational and vocational work in 
institutions must include the principle of vocational 
guidance. Men and women must be studied with a ' 
view of determining the intellectual and vocational 
interests and needs. The educational and voca- 
tional work must be adjusted to meet these needs. 
This means mental and physical examination at en- 
trance and continued examinations from time to time. 
It means the segregation of mental defectives. Effi- 
ciency of shop plants would increase immeasurably 

Eighth. It should be a condition of parole that , 
no prisoner may be discharged until he can read, 
write, and speak the English language, except for 
reasons of physical or mental defect. Perhaps the 
only feature of educational work which should be 
made absolutely compulsory is that of removing 
illiteracy, and no inmate should be allowed to 
escape the first obligations of citizenship. Attend- 


ance upon classes in reading, writing, and speaking 
the English language should be made compulsory for 
those who are illiterate. They might receive "com- 
pensation" as those in productive labor and there 
might also be voluntary class work in hygiene, civics, 
history, and arithmetic. There may even be classes 
in economics, political science, elementary engineer- 
ing, stenography, typewriting, telegraphy, and such 
work and any other subject where at least five in- 
mates are willing to attend the full number of evening 
classes. Whether these classes should be held in the 
daytime or evening or both is not discussed here. 

Ninth. The trade work in institutions must not 
be entered into until there is an understanding with 
organized labor. This principle has a deep signifi- 
cance especially in some trades. For exaniple, in 
printing. In New York State it would be practically 
impossible for a man to secure work as a printer if 
he had been trained in a prison trade school of print- 
ing unless the Union desired to or were willing to 
admit him. I do not anticipate very much difficulty 
in this matter provided those interested in prison re- 
form work on the principle that they must cooperate 
with organized labor and have the latter understand 
the economic and social advantages of the new voca- 
tional educational movement. 

Tenth. The State administration in charge of 
charitable and correctional institutions should co- 
operate with other State boards or commissions. 
The department of agriculture, for example, can as- 
sist materially with suggestions and expert assist- 
ance in matters agricultural. The State superin- 


tendent of public instruction through his association 
can give direct help in the educational work. The 
United States Government and a number of the 
States employ specialists in vocational instruction 
whose services may be requisitioned. 

Eleventh. Suggestions as to the occupations 
which may be represented in correctional institutions 
follow. Obviously one must keep in mind that 
these suggestions are very dependent upon location 
and type of institution. 

(A) AGRICULTURE. Farm enterprise can play a 
large part in a scheme of rehabilitation of prisoners. 
There is a marked moral and physical reaction from 
intimate relationships with growing objects and 
responsibility assumed in their care. Furthermore, \ 
the food supply of the institutional table from the 
farm is naturally superior to that purchased. In 
obtaining a site for an institution, the State should 
take into consideration the conditions/ of the soil, 
drainage, and location. There can be an exchange 
of products between the various State institutions. 
For example, butter, cheese, condensed milk, and so 
on from an institution located in a dairy district 
could be exchanged for products of an institution 
which is more favorably located for the growing of 
fruits and the specialty of which would be canned 
and preserved goods. Plants and flowers might be 
successfully put on the market from an institution 
located near a city and where the soil was such as to 
produce these products. 

Too much cheap meat is eaten by the average pris- 
oner. Unless these men perform more manual labor, 


it would be better for an institution to discover 
grains and vegetables which would furnish the same 
nutriment. These would be very nutritious and 
less expensive. 

Again, every State has a large amount of land 
which is practically valueless. It either needs re- 
forestation or drainage or scientific cultivation for 
a number of years. Here alone is a never ceasing 
occupation for institutions to undertake. 

of the various State departments and commissions, 
the session laws, letterheads, printed and embossed, 
lithographed letters, school certificates, and so on 
furnish an ample field. 

tity of goods used by State, county, and city in- 
stitutions and by the public schools in the lines of 
wood and metal furniture is very large. Manual 
training benches, cooking tables, drawing equip- 
ments, school desks, physical apparatus, filing cabi- 
nets, lockers, and a score of other articles might be 
made with profit to the inmates and to the State. 
But the institutions will need more adequate machin- 
ery to handle a well turned out product. 

(D) SHEET METAL. Cornices, metal ceilings, 
ventilators, waste cans, automobile license signs, 
utensils, and other 1 products in the line of sheet 
metal wates will find a steady outlet and the making 
of these products will provide excellent trade instruc- 

(E) KNIT GOODS. Hosiery, underwear, sweaters, 
gloves, caps, scarfs, and any other products of knit- 


ting machines are admirable lines of work for useful 
and profitable employment for female inmates. It 
would make an angel weep to visit some institutions 
and see men doing this sort of work under the name 
of vocational training. 

(F) BOOTS, SHOES, AND SLIPPERS. These articles 
are much needed. If making brooms is a blind man's 
job and making overalls and knit goods is a woman's 
job, then the present way of making shoes in a State 
prison is a grandfather's job. The machinery used 
and methods employed are antiquated. Now if the 
institutions that claim to make shoes are doing it for 
the sake of making shoes, then all one has to do is to 
change the label over the door and say : " This is the 
place where we make poor shoes by ancient processes 
and do all we can to unfit a man to earn a living 
through shoe manufacturing after he leaves this 
institution." The shoe industry offers a great 
opportunity for trade education in institutions if 
the shops are conducted on a plan of organization 
and equipment and method similar to that provided 
on the outside. 

ing, machine shop practice, electrical work, automo- 
bile repairing, foundry work, painting and decorating, 
building construction, steam fitting, boiler and 
engine practice are useful and profitable trades. 
Obviously the equipment for some of these lines of 
work is expensive. It is equally true that not every 
institution could have all these lines, and some 
located in the country would have practically none 
of them. Generally speaking, which is all one can 


do if he is thinking of the country as a whole, it 
would be well to have one State institution so 
equipped for the teaching of these trades that it 
could do considerable of the repair work for all the 

ficial stone, brick for State roads, cement roads, and 
the manufacture of brick for building offer a field 
for effort for an institution located where the raw 
material may be easily obtained and where there is 
a market for the output. 

(I) LAUNDRY WORK. Of course every institu- 
tion has its laundry. A good many of them claim 
to be training laundry workers. It is safe to say that 
no laundrymen are made through washing overalls 
and prisoners' shirts. The skill and experience ob- 
tained here can hardly be transferred to the ironing 
of a lady's waist or a dress skirt in an outside laundry. 
If laundry workers are to be trained, they must have 
material from the outside on which to work, as well 
as the ordinary washing and ironing connected with 
the average institution. 

(J) BRUSHES AND BROOMS. Absolute elimina- 
tion from all institutions except those for the blind. 
These industries might have a place in the solitary 
confinement cell. They would serve as vocational 

Ice manufacture and other occupations most directly 
concerned with the maintenance of the institution 
need no elaboration beyond what has already been 
given in the text preceding the enumerated articles. 


President, National Highways Association 



I DO not like the title of my chapter, nor its limita- 
tions, but having enlisted for the war will do the part 
assigned by those who, knowing more, are leading us 
and our brothers to better days. In doing so, how- 
ever, I shall not limit this chapter to the chapter 
title. The whole problem is too broad, too inter- 
laced for that. In fact too new one might say 
at least newly thought about by thoughtful people. 

There is both everything and nothing in a name 
there is the very beginning of our trouble in 
getting a really good start. How can we get rid of 
words like "crime ", "convict ", "prisoner ", "jail ", 
"cells", "detention camps"? In one breath we 
admit that fully three fourths of our brothers are not 
wholly responsible, and in the very next treat them 
as though they were. Even "Honor Men" does not 
leave quite the right feeling. I emphasize the im- 
portance of somehow changing present designations 
to kindlier ones that may point to brighter, better 
days instead of to the evil ones of the past. It will 
take skill and thought to do it in manly fashion 



but do it, and we will have a real foundation to build 
upon. Give a dog a bad name and it is fastened to 
him. But give him a good one and he will keep that 
as well. And we want our brothers to keep their 
good names. 

But there is even more in the spirit of our surround- 
ings, our environments, as the scientists say. Preach- 
ing and telling by word of mouth will go for nought 
if the precept, the example, is lacking. How can 
one expect improvement within a jail or the cell 
within the jail itself ? We shall not rightly attack the 
problem until we tear down jails and destroy their 
cells. Such pest-holes destroy our brothers. Their 
retention will make all our other efforts of no avail. 

We should remember that our brothers have only 
made MISTAKES like other children before them, 
like ourselves, and like those who come next after 
us and them. They and we are, after all, but 
children although grown in stature. While impor- 
tant, temporarily, to apply scientific corrective 
methods, why not go farther back and stop it all at 
the source ? People of themselves are not criminal, 
feeble-minded, imbecile. Society is responsible in 
the first place for their making, so why does not 
society stop such "products"? Why shift the 
responsibility upon the innocent? Society has, for 
centuries, manufactured more criminals than human 
nature of its own accord produces. The more for- 
tunate but not necessarily less criminal, have almost 
universally cruelly punished those less fortunate 
brothers caught in their so-called crimes. Correc- 
tion, instruction, forgiveness, kindness, have played 


but a small part in dealing with the "criminal" or 
"convict." Would that we might call him by a 
kindlier name ! For many of us now think and talk 
of him as of a different breed, forgetting that he is, 
after all, a man. We cry out against slavery, yet 
legalize it for tens of thousands. We scorn revenge, 
yet mete out vengeance in the name of the law. We 
remove from society offenders against society and 
forcibly detain them for years in surroundings as 
much unlike real society as possible. We then once 
more thrust them upon society, untaught, revenge- 
ful, weak, broken in mind and body, and wonder why 
they fall again ! Why should they not ? Has not 
society done its utmost to prevent their rise ? And 
yet society places the responsibility upon these poor 
unfortunate beings ! Most of them are mentally 
deficient and should have our care and help not 
our contempt. Many of them have been sorely 
tempted, without ability to run from temptation. 
And all of us must run ! Some have led honorable 
and useful lives and would continue to do so did 
society have the forbearance and forgiveness of the 
parent toward the child. And society should have 
such forgiveness, and thus restore men to society 
and not brand them as criminals. Our modern 
prisons are barbaric. They typify the mediaeval 
prisons so loathsome to our imagination, and yet 
we call them modern. They are not. They still 
hold men in abject slavery, in idleness worse than 
death; without sun sometimes without light; 
with foul air and fouler companions. Does this 
treatment, even of the convict, produce repentance ? 


No ; a thousand times no ! Revenge, insanity, more 
crime are the inevitable results. 

As in many other activities, our laws and their ad- 
ministration are fifty years behind the times. Once 
in prison how many of us could resist the debauch- 
ing influences? How many of us could resist the 
degrading example of those associates more steeped 
in crime and hardened by their previous contact 
with still earlier criminals ? How many of us could 
return to the life outside without a feeling of bitter- 
ness or resentment against our whole social structure ? 
We have abolished negro slavery a paradise to that 
of criminal slavery. We maintain institutions little 
better than the torture chambers of ancient times. 
They are not designed for reform, tuition, enlighten- 
ment. They offer little incentive to right living, 
high ideals. They are not places where erring hu- 
manity may be schooled and trained to become good 
citizens. They are more fit to drag and trample 
down into the mire the unfortunates sent there for 
their "first offense." There even plant life does not 
exist. The grass, the plants, the flowers, the trees 
do not grow within their yards. How much less 
does man ! Could there be greater shame to our 
nation than thus to cling to the ancient custom of 
depriving men of their freedom, shutting them up 
within four walls, leaving them to their fate ? "Men 
are but children of a larger growth." But do we 
treat our children in this wise ? Do we not believe 
in pointing out to them and making attractive and 
possible the road to virtue? Do we rather enslave 
and chastise them unmercifully for having failed to 


find it out for themselves? We used to, when 
parents held the lives of their children in their hands. 
The State now so holds the lives of its citizens.* 
When shall we take such power away ? In our crim- v 
inal procedure we now have the spirit of punishment, 
cruelty, unkindness, physical force, slavery, confine- 
ment, isolation, darkness, silence, and all the result- 
ant evils thereof resistance, revenge, sullenness, 
depravity, hopelessness, insanity. 

We should turn on the light ; we should give men 
the sunshine, the free air and fields of the country. 
We should have and thus give hope, faith, help. 
We should correct, not punish. We should be kind 
and fair, and our "pals" will respond most wonder- 
fully. Children are not controlled by physical 
force. Deliberate, low-voiced, firm kindness and 
" square " dealing gain their confidence. So it is with 
their larger brothers. What results to be attained 
by such a change change in our acknowledg- 
ment of the wrongs we have done to the convict ! 
We have been too long blind to this wrong thinking 
and doing. We have had too much pride, too little 
charity. We have admired too long the public 
prosecutor. We have delayed too long the coming 
of the public defender. 

How can we do all this ? We must do something - 
with those who violate the rules. Yes ! But that 
something should be to help them not to break the 
rules again. Temporary exile into a temporary so- 
ciety as nearly as possible like normal society on 
the outside would seem the best solution. They 
would thus be learning to play the game according 


to the rules. Responsibility during their temporary 
exile would increase this desire to play so well, so 
fairly, that they could go back from whence they 
came. To do this we must get them "Back to the 
Land." But how ? One way is through the building 
of good roads, although some prefer railroading ! 

To have good roads everywhere throughout these 
United States will mean more to this nation than any 
other development since the Declaration of Inde- 
pendence. During all the ages it has been of primary 
importance to provide means of intercommunication. 
People, like water, must move or stagnate. They 
must run and play like the brook itself or become 
sluggish and dull to themselves as well as to 
others. Of the seven modes of intercommunication 
water, roads, post, railroad, telegraph, telephone, 
and wireless only one, roads, is free to all the 
public of the earth. Roads are the most universally 
used and therefore the most beneficial to the greatest 
number of people. The importance of good roads 
everywhere is paramount their benefits are all- 

There are eighteen million children who endeavor 
to attend school. There are over thirty million who 
should attend school. Why don't they? Largely 
because during much of the school term a consider- 
able part of the two million miles of our roads is 
impassable. This is shown by the fact that only 
nine tenths of one per cent (0.9%) of the urban 
white population of the United States of native 
parentage is illiterate, while rural illiteracy is six 
hundred per cent greater in the same class of inhabit- 


ants. How can we have or get good schools in the 
rural districts if we have not the good roads to reach 
them at all times and in all seasons ? If we do not 
have good schools, and illiteracy results, then we 
help, to the greatest possible extent, the growth 
of our criminal classes. 

The relation of good and bad roads to illiteracy 
and thus to crime is indicated by the accompanying 
table : 




Maine, New Hamp- 
Massachusetts, Rhode 
Island, Connecticut. 
Delaware, Maryland, 
Virginia, West Vir- 
ginia, North Carolina, 
South Carolina, 
Georgia, Florida. 
Washington, Oregon, 
Arkansas, Louisiana, 
Oklahoma, Texas. 

















This table does not of course include foreign born, 
native born of foreign parentage, or negroes, all of 
whom are excluded for obvious reasons. Illiteracy 
is eleven times greater in the South Atlantic States 
than in New England, while the percentage of im- 


proved roads (such as they are) is less than one third. 
Similar figures for the Pacific and West South Central 
are : fourteen times greater illiteracy, while the per- 
centage of improved roads is less than one fifth as 
much. The excess of illiteracy over urban New 
England is only one hundred and forty per cent, 
while in the South Atlantic States this excess is nearly 
four hundred per cent, due to the lower percent- 
age of improved roads. This difference is slightly 
greater in comparing the other two groups in the 

The children of to-day are the electors, the repre- 
sentatives, the senators, the judges, one of them the 
President of to-morrow. The population is increas- 
ing by leaps and bounds. If education means 
liberty, and if poor roads mean illiteracy, or worse, 
have we a right not to build good roads, even if they 
will not pay for themselves well within the genera- 
tion which builds them? 

To-day we have preventive medicine. Instead of 
waiting to cure people of disease, we are bending 
every effort to prevent disease. Why not profit 
thereby? Crime is a kind of disease. Why not do 
those things which will prevent crime? Idleness 
more than any other one thing, produces moral 
deterioration and crime. The building of good roads 
everywhere by the nation, the State, the town, will 
give constant employment to the army of unem- 
ployed. This will tend to prevent crime if we apply 
it rightly. 

What better thing than to employ those tem- 
porarily withdrawn from our society in the building 


of good roads everywhere ? It will give brawn, brain, 
and heart to those most needing them. It will give 
freedom of mind and body. It will give them in- 
spiration, hope. Tear down our prison walls, and 
rear no more, for they are festering places for our 
fellow beings. Let us no longer go back on those of 
our kind ! Let us rather, from now on, give our 
"pals" a "square deal" ! We can be sure they will 
answer in kind ! 

EDITOR'S NOTE : The methods of organizing and operating convict 
road camps are fully discussed in the following theses prepared under 
the joint direction of the National Committee on Prisons and Prison 
Labor and the Graduate Department of Highway Engineering at 
Columbia University : " The Utilization of Convict Labor in Highway 
Construction in the North ", by Sydney Wilmot (published in the Pro- 
ceedings of the Academy of Political Science, January, 1914) ; " The 
Utilization of Convict Labor in Highway Construction in the South ". 
by James Wilmot ; " Convict Road Work for Misdemeanant Prisoners ", 
by James L. Stamford; also in Bulletin No. 414 of the United States 
Department of Agriculture, " Convict Labor for Road Work." 


Vice President, International Boot and Shoe Workers' Union 


THE attitude of the union man towards the worker 
in prison has been misunderstood, misrepresented, 
and misinterpreted to such an extent that it seems 
advisable to sketch its development in order to point 
the determining factor active opposition to the * 
exploitation of the prisoner in defiance of his rights 
and those of the public. 

The type of prison which we have to-day was de- 
vised by the good Quakers of Pennsylvania at the 
close of the Revolutionary War. Solitary confine- 
ment in a cell with time to meditate and pray was 
the means, they believed, to overcome the horrors 
of herding men, women, and children in filthy prison 
pens as depicted by John Howard and Elizabeth 
Fry. The Pennsylvania system, as it came to be 
known, was taken over by New York State in 1796 
when Newgate Prison was built in New York City. 1 
Auburn Prison was built some years later, the Penn- 
sylvania plan being modified by the creation of 
workshops where the prisoners could work together, 
returning to solitude in their cells when working 
hours were over. Sing Sing, built in 1827, followed 
the Auburn plan, and since that time practically 

1 Charles Richmond Henderson, " Modern Prison Systems." 


all the Northern States and a goodly number in the 
South have built one or more of these bastile prisons 
and the factory work has become a vital part of the 
prison system. 

The New York law of 1796 authorized the inspec- 
tors of State prisons to employ the prisoners in such 
a manner as they deemed best and "accredit them 
for their labor as they shall deem just and right." 1 

The words "just and right" in the law are a mock- 
ery for, even in those early days, the labor of the 
prisoner was exploited and the products of his labor 
placed in unfair competition with those of the free 
working man. Efforts to restrict the evil effects 
of this unfair competition appear in the New York 
Statutes in 1801 when provision was made that boots 
and shoes made by convicts should be branded 
"prison made." 2 

Branding was the earliest mode of protection and 
was followed by such schemes as limiting the number 
of prisoners employed in one industry, instanced 
by the New York legislation of 1804, which prohib- 
ited the employment of more than one eighth of the 
prisoners in the business of shoe-making ; this one 
eighth not to include women and men whp had 
formerly learned the trade. 

A further effort to restrain the unfair competition 
would seem to have inspired the legislation of 1817 
restricting the purchase by the State of any materials 
"to be wrought or worked up for sale by the convicts 

1 C. Z. Lincoln. "Constitutional History of New York State", Vol. 
Ill, pp. 249, 252. 

2 C. Z. Lincoln. " Constitutional History of New York State ", Vol. 
Ill, p. 249. 


confined in the State Prison on account of the State, 
but to employ them solely in manufacturing and 
making up such materials as may be brought to the 
prison by or for individuals or companies to whom 
such materials may belong to be manufactured at 
fixed prices for the labor bestowed upon them, to be 
paid by the owner of the goods to the agent of the 
prison for the use of the State." l 

Further consideration would point to this as an 
insidious creeping in of the Contract System rather 
than a means of protecting free workers. The 
Contract System, which Doctor Whitin discusses in 
detail in "Penal Servitude", 2 was firmly established 
in New York State in 1828 when the inspectors of the 
prisons were authorized to make contracts from time 
to time for the labor of the convicts "with such per- 
sons and upon such terms as may be most beneficial 
to the State." 3 The inspectors were also instructed 
to defray all the expenses of the prisons by the labor 
of the prisoners. In brief, it was ordained that the 
prisons should be self-supporting without any con- 
sideration as to the effect on the prison workmen or 
the laborers outside the prison. 

The Contract System was sooner or later adopted 
in every bastile prison, the alternative when there 
were no bastiles being the lease system which Doctor 
Lucile Eaves has described as it existed in California 
prior to the erection of San Quentin Prison : 

1 C. Z. Lincoln. " Constitutional History of New York State ", Vol. 
Ill, p. 249. 

2 E. Stagg Whitin. "Penal Servitude." C. 3-5. 

3 C. Z. Lincoln. "Constitutional History of New York State ", VoL 
HI, p. 256. 


" The first plan adopted for the regulation of the 
State Prison," Doctor Eaves states, "had nothing 
to recommend it but its cheapness. The whole re- 
sponsibility of caring for the prisoners and finding 
them employment was turned over to the lessees. 
Two men undertook to guard and maintain the con- 
victs of the State without other compensation than 
that which they hoped to take from their labor. As 
might be expected this plan under which the State 
sought to shirk its responsibilities for the manage- 
ment of the State prison worked very badly while 
the prison inspectors were not explicit in their report 
of conditions, the distressing details which must 
have called forth their general remarks are easily 
imagined. They declared the State Prison of Cali- 
fornia, as it now exists, is no paradise for scoundrels. 
It is a real penitentiary a place of suffering and 
expiation of these there is abundance, with priva- 
tions and corporal punishment." 1 

These labor systems, both contract and lease, were 
brutal and degrading to the prisoner, the contractor 
or lessee seeking only the greatest pecuniary profit 
from his undertaking and caring nothing for the 
welfare of the inmates. 

Their effect outside the prison was equally disas- 
trous. Employers in similar lines of industry were 
placed at a disadvantage, not so much because of the 
quantity produced by the prisons as because the 
contractors were able to circularize the market at a 
low figure, setting the selling price of the product so 
low that even if it did not entirely ruin the employer 
of free labor it had a depressing effect which bore 

1 Lucile Eaves. "California Labor Legislation" (University of 
California Publications in Economics), Vol. II, p. 353. 


down upon the wages of the free working man. In 
several instances the prison contractors concentrated 
upon one line of industry with the result that that 
industry was destroyed as a free industry. Samuel 
Gompers frequently refers to the time in New York 
State when the stove molders who were not serving 
a term in prison and working at their trade there were 
walking the streets in idleness. 1 

The mechanics of the State of New York were 
active against the prison competition as early as 
1831 when protest was made to the legislature against 
the suffering endured by outside working men because 
of the marble cutting and iron industries in the prison. 2 

The history of the labor movement in the different 
States disclosed a similar struggle against the unfair 
competition resulting from the labor of the prisoner. 

Connecticut, Indiana, Maine, Maryland, Massa- 
chusetts, and New York prohibit the manufacture 
of certain articles in the prison. Massachusetts, 
Minnesota, Pennsylvania, and Ohio limited the num- 
ber of convicts in any one line of industry. Illinois, 
Indiana, and Pennsylvania forbade the use of ma- 
chinery in the prison. 3 

These efforts were fruitless, for if the prison out- 
put in any line of industry were checked in one State, 
it was sure to increase in another. 

The organization of the Knights of Labor in 1869 
made possible national concerted action against the 

Address before the Executive Committee of the Mutual Welfare 
League, Sing Sing Prison, July 29, 1916. 

2 C. Z. Lincoln. "Constitutional History of New York State ", Vol. 
Ill, p. 257. 

8 E. Stagg Whitin. "The Caged Man ", p. 40. 


pernicious Contract System. The first platform of 
the Knights contains the clause : 

"Resolved that we demand the abolishment of the 
system of contract labor in our prisons and peniten- 
tiaries and that the labor performed by convicts 
shall be that which will least conflict with honest 
industry outside." 1 

The chief evidence of the activity of the Knights 
is found in the enactment of legislation, requiring 
that prison-made goods be branded "Prison-made" 
or a license required for their sale. At the present 
time such laws are on the statute books of New York 
and some twelve other States, but have failed to meet 
the situation in that they are impossible of enforce- 
ment, having been declared unconstitutional when- 
ever tested by the courts. 2 

The first suggestion that this difficulty should be 
overcome by federal legislation was made in 1886 
by the National Anti-Contract Association, an asso- 
ciation organized to protect the market by curtailing 
the contractor's ability to sell his goods. 3 

The proposal made by the Anti-Contract Associa- 
tion was indorsed by the Industrial Commission of 
1900 which states that "it seems clear that Congress 
should legislate to prevent the importation and sale 
of convict-made goods from one state into another 
without the consent of the state into which the goods 
are imported or where they are sold." 4 

1 Carroll D. Wright, "Historical Sketch of the Knights of Labor." 

2 157 N. Y. 1, People v. Hawkins ; see also Bulletin New York State 
Department of Labor, March, 1910, p. 58. 

3 E. Stagg Whitin, "Penal Servitude", p. 92. 

4 Report of the Industrial Commission on Labor Legislation, Vol. 5, p. 6. 


Through the efforts of organized labor, a bill was 
drafted embodying this thought and introduced and 
reintroduced into Congress. Several times it has 
passed the House and in 1914 was favorably reported 
by the Senate Committee on Interstate Commerce. 
The prison contractors and wardens have persist- 
ently opposed the measure, the methods to which 
they resorted being exposed in the report made by 
the Maryland Penal Penitentiary Commission in 
1913 to the Honorable Phillips L. Goldsborough, 
Governor of Maryland. 1 

The attitude of the present administration would 
point to favorable action towards the measure should 
it once succeed in passing Congress, 2 and that its 
passage would be effective in overcoming the evils 
of the Contract System is evidenced by the fact that 
many contracts provide that on its passage they shall 
immediately become null and void. 3 

Restrictive legislation has not been the only means 
suggested by organized labor for solving the prison 
labor problem; to union men is due the credit for 
the first constructive scheme for the distribution of 
prison products. 

Into the constitution of New York State in 1894, 
and largely through the efforts of labor men who con- 

1 Report of the Maryland Penitentiary Penal Commission, 1913, pp. 

2 The bill abolishing the Contract System in New Jersey was signed in 
1911 by Honorable Woodrow Wilson, at the time Governor of the State; 
also the National Democratic Platform, 1916, declared in favor of prison 

3 See contracts, Maryland House of Correction, cited "Penal Servi- 
tude", appendix 1, pp. 115-117. 


ceived the idea, was written a provision that no 
prison product should be sold on the open market, 
but setting aside for these products the market in the 
State's own institutions and departments and those 
of its political subdivisions, which were forbidden 
to buy on the open market commodities which the 
prisons could supply. 1 

This system, known as the "State Use" System, 
has been slow to develop, largely due to the in- 
fluence of those who had profited by the old-time 
Contract System and were determined to reinstate 
it. 2 

Another factor, as Thomas Mott Osborne has 
pointed out, is that "slave labor is inefficient labor ", 3 
and the prisoners themselves, having no incentive to 
efficient work, have taken care that the State make 
as little as possible out of them. 

With the introduction of self-government a new 
day dawned for prison industries. The prisoners 
now desire to "make good" when they leave the 
prison and realize the advantage to themselves in 
the ability to do a good day's work and earn a good 
day's pay. The increased output of the prison 
shops at Sing Sing since the introduction of self- 
government bears testimony to their new ambition. 4 

J C. Z. Lincoln, "Constitutional History of New York State", Vol. 
Ill, p. 287. 

2 Final Report of the Commissioners to examine the Department of 
State Prisons, New York, 1911. 

3 Thomas Mott Osborne, "Prison Reform", an address delivered in 
Bridgeport, Conn., Feb. 28, 1915. 

4 William H. Wadhams, "The New Prison System" (published by 
National Committee on Prisons and Prison Labor, Pamphlet 36). 


Labor men noted this new activity in the prison 
industries, and Thomas Mott Osborne had not been 
many months warden of Sing Sing before a repre- 
sentative group of labor men, headed by Samuel 
Gompers, visited the institution and offered to help 
in the reorganization of the prison industries. The 
attack on Mr. Osborne delayed the work for a year, 
but at the annual meeting of the New York State 
Federation of Labor in October, 1916, definite action 
was taken when a committee was named "to devise 
a system of welfare craft instruction for state prison 
inmates learning trades." 

John J. Manning, the moving spirit in this under- 
taking, prepared for the Federation a comprehensive 
scheme for the reorganization of the prison industries 
of the State, which the Federation Committee 
adopted and is presenting to the prison authorities 
and the people of the State. It seems fitting here 
to outline the plan which Mr. Manning proposed 
and which, by the action of its committee, the 
Federation indorsed as essential to the establish- 
ment of a satisfactory and efficient system of prison 
industries : 

On commitment all prisoners should pass through 
a receiving station in order that their physical, 
mental, and industrial qualifications can be deter- 
mined ; as a result of this study they should be as- 
signed to industrial work. 

A survey of all the buildings connected with the 
penal institutions of the state should be made to 
determine their physical condition and for what 
industries they can best be used as now constructed, 
also whether changes are necessary in the construe- 


tion of these buildings and whether new buildings 
should be erected. 

A Board of Classification and Standardization 
should be established and empowered to standardize 
and classify the commodities consumed in the dif- 
ferent state institutions for a period of not less than 
ten years. The prison industries could then be 
placed on a sound working basis, and the market for 
the prison products being assured, the prison author- 
ities would be warranted in preparing a stock of goods 
for immediate delivery. This would prevent many 
of the manipulations of the law at present made by 
state departments in regard to the purchase of prison- 
made goods. 

The prison industries should be as diversified as 
possible, in order that the training afforded a prisoner 
may tend to meet his individual needs. This will 
also tend to restrict the number of men in each in- 
dustry so that on discharge a man can be assimilated 
readily in the trade in which he has become proficient 
while in prison. 

Outdoor work should be provided on prison farms, 
in road-building and on public works. The road 
work should be coordinated with a comprehensive 
system for the building of roads throughout the state, 
and the farm work afford opportunity for agricultural 
training to men who will become farmers on release. 

Skilled and practical teachers or instructors should 
be secured for every industry, farm project or road 
undertaking and these instructors should be disas- 
sociated with politics in every sense of the word. 
It should be the aim of the institutions to turn out 
not a vast number of products, but good marketable 
articles which state institutions will willingly pur- 
chase and which will compete on a fair basis with 
goods made by free labor. 

A wage should be paid commensurate with the 
work done by the prisoner. This will insure two 


decided advantages : a higher grade of workmanship, 
every industry having demonstrated that contented 
workmen do better work; and the incentive which 
will stimulate the man who knows that those near 
and dear to him benefit by his labor. 

Organized labor has answered the challenge that 
it seeks to prohibit labor in the prison. Labor men 
opposed the exploitation of the prisoner under the 
lease and contract system. Labor men devised the 
"state use" system which affords opportunity to the 
prisoner and fair play to him and to the free working 
man. To-day labor men present and stand firmly 
behind a broad constructive program for the develop- 
ment of prison industries on a right basis. And, 
furthermore, if the prisoner will seize his opportunity 
and develop himself to union standards on his release 
we will receive him into the Union and afford him 
the protection, the fellowship of the union group. 1 

1 Statement made by John J. Manning at Conference at Sing Sing 
Prison, July 29, 1915. 



Chairman, Committee on Employment, National Committee on Prisons and 
Prison Labor 



THOUSANDS of boys leave the reform schools 
and reformatories of this country every year. 
Thousands of them find their way back to the courts 
and on to the penitentiaries and State prisons. 
Thousands of the men in the State prisons, and who 
come out year by year, will tell you that they began 
their life of crime in a reform school or other juvenile 
institution. It is an endless chain. 

In the city of Baltimore an illegitimate child is 
placed on the turning wheel and enters the foundling 
institution ; at eight he is transferred to the indus- 
trial school, and at fourteen is graduated into the 
reformatory end of the industrial school. At eight- 
een he graduates, trained in a trade at which only 
women work, unable to get a job. He is picked 
up on the street and sent to the city jail for a term, 
and again works at the woman's trade. Upon 
graduation from this pest-hole, he is no better off 
than before. He is picked up again, goes to the 
workhouse to continue his education in the same 
woman's trade. Several years later he finds him- 
self again released. He is skilled in a trade profit- 
able to the penal institutions. The governor " for- 



mally notifies the justices that they must send as 
many convicts as possible to the House of Cor- 
rection because of the need of keeping good faith 
with the contractors at the institution." 1 The 
Governor of one of our Western States found the 
contractors following up just such cases, framing them 
and returning them to the prison. 2 What chance has 
our "graduate" to get an honest job? Once in the 
State prison his skill is valuable ; he works at the old 
trade, but when he graduates at the end of four, 
five, or ten years is it strange that he soon returns ? 
Some men have a chance when they get out of 
prison a chance to commit again the crime for 
which they entered prison. They have protection 
in their life of crime. The only requisite is the 
guarantee of the old gang to the politicians that 
they will be on the level with their pals, and if the 
politicians will control the police and the court, 
they will control the elections by casting fraudulent 
votes, as my friend Jim did thirty times one elec- 
tion day, and in return was allowed to continue 
his old life unmolested. Every clever man coming 
from prison to a great city like New York has this 
opportunity. Is it to be wondered when he sees 
all around him political corruption, in prison and 
out, that he takes the chance and continues in the 
old life? 

1 See " Report on the House of Correction, Jessup, Maryland, 
Made by the National Committee on Prison Labor, November 1st, 
1911", to the Board of Managers, House of Correction. Published in 
"Penal Servitude", Appendix 1. 

2 As stated in correspondence with the National Committee on Prison 
Labor, 1912. 


Should he desire to go straight let us see what 
the struggle is. Pale and emaciated, garbed in an 
ill-fitting suit of prison make and of a material 
which every detective knows at sight, with carfare 
to the place of conviction and five or ten dollars to 
boot, this wreck of humanity faces the problem of 
readjusting his life to a community which he has 
left five, ten, or twenty years before, with former 
friends who shun him, with employment agencies 
which refuse to assist him, with police who dog his 
steps. He spends the night under the shelter of a 
sister's roof. Some crime takes place in the vicinity. 
The police arrest him, and he is taken to the lock-up. 
He avoids conviction and starts again. He secures 
a small job of a menial type and gets a little money 
ahead. He is visited by a member of the old gang. 
"Come back to the Gang" is the demand. He 
refuses. "Give up your money, or the boss will 
know you are a Con!" The problem is to decide 
between the old life of crime, the payment of black- 
mail, or the loss of the job. There is no protection 
except to the evildoer. 

Yet society has thought that it did its duty towards 
the man who comes out of prison. Humane people 
possessed of human sympathy have established 
Prisoners' Aid Societies, have given old clothes and 
wood-yard jobs to the ex-convict and his family 
since the founding of the Pennsylvania Prison Society 
in 1787 to the present day. These efforts have been 
fruitless. The old prison system with its oppres- 
sion, cells, clubs, guards, and chains, so brutalized 
the creatures that endured it that, in the majority 


of cases, they remained permanently in the criminal 
class, living half in prison and half out, half their 
time denouncing society, and half their time wreak- 
ing vengeance upon society. 

Prisoners' Aid Societies have been profitable 
even to those whose salaries were not paid by Prison- 
ers' Aid Societies. Hysterical furor, temporary 
"clean-ups'', exposure of petty graft, the tickling 
of the sensibilities of lady bountiful and pardoning 
the noisy to the despair of the deserving prisoner 
for the special gratification of an administration or 
a statesman, mark an emotional wave and little, 
if any, real progress. 

Can opportunity be given the ex-prisoner to make v 
a place, an honest place for himself, in the world 
outside the prison? If so, what is the approach? 
How can he be so protected that society itself is 
protected ? 

The first approach lies in the prison; the initial 
work must be done there. The so-called Mutual 
Welfare System is a very simple expedient whereby 
the individuals we find in prison can express the 
best that there is in them, can improve their own 
conditions by consorting with others who are sit-* 
uated like themselves and can demonstrate to the 
unconvicted community that despite the accident 
of their incarceration they have the ability to over- 
come evil propensities with good, and to conduct 
themselves according to the dictates of societyl 
Ball games, concerts, plays, the workshops, the 
schoolroom classes, sociability in the mess-hall, 
the prisoners' court, are simply the necessary ad- 


juncts to a suppressed community which seeks 
self-expression, self-respect. 

Those who fail in this community life, and no 
one expects that number will be small, will need to 
be brought by their fellows to medical and psy- 
chiatrical specialists. The prison community must 
see to it that those who cannot meet its standards- 
are not permitted to rejoin the community outside 
the prison. The first step must be taken in the 
prison and only the man who has "made good" 
in the prison be permitted to leave the prison walls. 

The men emerging from prison, whose relations 
have been right with their fellows in the institution, 
possess a new idea, a new thought of opportunity, 
and they carry the germ of this to the larger com- 
munity they enter; no longer do they carry forth 
the germs of crime, of vengeance, and skill in exploit- 
ing the community. 

The new prison movement is reaching beyond 
the ex-prisoners to their fellows in the underworld, 
to the lowest strata of our social structure. Peter 
Cullen, a member of the Mutual Welfare League, 
escaped from Sing Sing Prison and for several weeks 
no clue could be had as to his whereabouts. Sud- 
denly one day Peter notified Thomas Mott Osborne 
that he was voluntarily returning to the prison be- 
cause his pals urged him not to betray the League. 
Peter's pals had felt the spirit of the new move- 
ment and responded to it in their own crude way. 

The change that is taking place in the roots of 
our civilization is hard to describe as we know so 
little of real underworld conditions, but in brief, 


the tyranny of the police, the exploitation by fellow- 
criminals, the subtle influence of the politicians, are 
passing. The underworld is responding to the op- 
portunity for freedom and protection in that free- 
dom "free to do right" is fast becoming a reality. 

. The movement must spread to the upper strata, 
the well-to-do must learn how to regard, how to 
meet the man who has been in prison. They must 
learn to eschew charity, to refuse to patronize, to 
demonstrate that democracy is a vital thing, the 
dominant factor in the life of the nation. 

Protection to the man coming out of prison, pro- 
tection to do right, is the great new thought. We 
have shown that, when released under the new sys- 
tem, the ex-prisoner will have a guarantee of physi- 
cal health, normal mentality, and industrial ability 
sufficient for self-support. This guarantee makes 
possible the protection to the worker of the union 
organization in his particular line, and the group 
power of the honest working man can be substi- 
tuted for the group influence of the crooked gang 
even the unorganized trades have their social clubs 
or other agencies with which the ex-prisoner can be 
associated. His great need is to be connected up 
with these outside agencies. 

To connect the ex-prisoner with these agencies 
for good, to open up for him a job which corresponds 
to the work he has successfully carried on in prison, 
is the task of those who would really help. This 
is equally true in regard to the graduate from a 
reform school, a reformatory, or a State prison; 
the emphasis is not on the place from which the 


man has come but on that to which he is going. The 
person who would make this connection should 
be informed well in advance from the prison ; when 
a man will be released, what his trade is and his 
ability in this trade, what social or religious activ- 
ities he would seek, what weaknesses he needs to 
fear and wherein his ambition lies. The man who 
welcomes the ex-prisoner to the world outside, who 
introduces him to his new life, needs a sympathetic 
understanding of the very soul of the man, yet must 
have a practical working knowledge of the world 
into which the man is going and be big enough and 
broad enough to be the "pal", not patron. Then, 
and then only, can the day of release from prison 
be divorced from the old thought of despair and 
possess the hope which comes from the sense of safety 
and protection secured by a drawing together of 
the forces of community life which are uplifting 

The ex-prisoner himself has no mean part to play 
in this work. He it is who can best welcome the 
newly released prisoner when he comes to the social 
center, the church, or the union. He it is who 
knows the heart-burning. He it is who knows 
the true friends who will help. It is the same ex- 
prisoner who can do most for the graduate of the 
juvenile institution or the wayward boy in the 
community. He is no mollycoddle, he has known 
life, he has been the outlaw, has lived through real 
temptation and understands the forces which appeal 
to the restless spirit of youth. His warning, his 
quiet suggestion, his reproof, have a subtle influence. 


The test of any prison system is the man who is 
released from prison ; his after life will demonstrate 
the practicability, the reality of any prison reform. 
From the ex-prisoner will come suggestions as to 
what he has found most difficult to withstand, as 
to where the new movement can be strengthened 
and made more effective. The "follow-up" work 
has a vital bearing on the whole prison problem, 
how great a bearing we can hardly realize ; it is too 
early as yet for us to grasp its full significance. 

But the work has been started. Some of us have 
joined together and through the medium of the 
Committee on Employment of the National Com- 
mittee on Prisons and Prison Labor are endeavor- 
ing to harness together forces never before coor- 
dinated, to make social relationships real and protec- 
tion adequate for the man who comes out of prison. 




Director, The Training School for Community Workers, New York, 
Secretary, National Community Center Association 



THE community center and the delinquent, not 
merely the problem of delinquency, need to be 
brought together. This is true whether the delin- 
quent be the graduate of a penal institution or the 
wayward youth not yet committed. The need is 
mutual; there is no greater need on either side. 
To make this proposition convincing it is necessary 
to define the community center and also to venture 
on a speculation as to the nature of delinquency. 

The , community center is an impulse toward 
meeting, and a device for meeting, one of the crying 
needs of all industrial civilizations. This need is 
the restoration of the possibility for human expres- 
siveness which in the first stages of industrialism 
is broken down ; and the provision of new means 
for ethical development among the common people 
who in our day are subjected to kinds of ethical 
stress which in the past have been experienced by 
none except the more adventurous members of the 
small leisure class. These considerations can only 

1 This chapter is largely based on a report not yet published, prepared 
by Miss Mildred Taylor, Secretary, Committee on Unadjusted Chil- 
dren of the People's Institute and the National Committee on Prisons 
and Prison Labor. 



be broadly stated here. The moral life of custom 
and of supernatural hope and fear, which has sus- 
tained and constrained the ninety and nine who 
did not stray in the past, is being rapidly made impo- 
tent under the reactions of science, of cosmopoli- 
tanism, of congestion, of factory production, of 
rapid transit, the diffusion of ideas and influences 
through printing, and the constant shifting of in- 
dividuals from group to group of differing customs. 
So much for the ethical part. It all applies to the 
human part too. The specialization of industry 
has de-humanized work; the family as an institu- 
tion has relatively lapsed. The organization of 
all social processes into vast units controlled from 
remote centers has deprived most individuals of 
the means for vital social expressiveness, wholesome 
self-assertion, and the sense of responsibility. 

The old order changeth ; the new order is a seeth- 
ing-pot Macbeth's witch-pot rather than Zang- 
will's melting-pot. Custom and law diverge ever 
more widely ; the actual group standards by which 
individuals really live grow more contrasting, while 
at the same time the individual moves (in America 
at least) freely from group to group. The whole 
order of things is more complex, more unstable, 
and the means for rightly "placing" the individual, 
whether socially or vocationally, are yet waiting 
to be forged out through social science. 

The above condition, as a totality, is not bad 
but good. It is, however, the background against 
which the delinquent must be studied, and it is 
the condition directly and consciously responsible 


for the world- wide movement to establish community 

Now for the community center. This is a name 
for any local organized center for ethical, human, 
or common interests. It is a watchword for those 
who are trying to win life back to the small unit 
basis in those fields of concern where the small unit 
is the right unit. If the theory back of Thomas 
Mott Osborne's work at Sing Sing is a correct one 
the theory that men live normally in groups of a 
fairly intimate character, that the community is 
made up of cooperative groups, that men grow vir- 
tuous through taking their destiny into their own 
hands through responsible action in small groups 
then the principles of Sing Sing must be estab- 
lished in the larger community, or else Sing Sing 
must continue as a refuge for the fortunate few. 
Sing Sing has become a fascinating laboratory for 
community work; its greatest interest lies in the 
fact that one may there observe in clear cut and 
favorable operation certain forces of human nature, 
certain hugely important principles of the endur- 
ing social organization which can also be observed 
in the community center movement in its many 
forms and under its many names; neighborhood 
association, social center, grange, Wirt School, 
and above all in the cooperative consumers' move- 
ment of European countries. 

This last named movement is of the same type 
as the community center movement in nearly all 
essentials. In it, vast economic processes have 
been reorganized on the small-unit basis. Retail 


societies, federations of retail societies, wholesale 
federations, propagandizing federations, an annual 
business of several billions of dollars, a membership 
of twenty-five million wage-earners, all, from bot- 
tom to top, rest on a basis of intimate units where 
every man knows his fellow man, where the local 
unit rises or falls by its own virtue and yet, in its 
hardships, is sustained by the resources of a great 
movement, and in its success contributes in ways 
vividly manifest to the success of the whole. The 
European movement has flooded over into social, 
moral, and spiritual life, in a hundred definable 
ways. In Belgium it constitutes the main part 
of the vital environment of a million members, 
and it remains in Belgium and eastern France the 
only important social structure, except possibly 
the Roman Catholic Church, which has not been 
shattered through the ravage and subjugation of 
the Great War. 

In America, the community movement centers 
in its latest phase in the use of public school build- 
ings by organized groups of the people. It is a 
new phase, yet sixty-eight cities were represented 
in the National Conference of Community Centers 
formed during the last year, and this number (of 
cities or towns, not of individual members) will 
grow to several hundred before another year has 
passed. In general, school community centers tend 
to become self-governing in a real way and are more 
or less sometimes wholly self-supporting. The 
promotion of self-governing and increasingly self- 
supporting community centers has become a policy 


with many State and municipal boards of education. 
These centers have memberships including all ages 
and both sexes, with emphasis on attendance by 
families as groups. The activities are whatever 
the people want, theoretically ; and in large measure 
what the wise professional leader suggests and pro- 
motes, practically. 

The community centers have not yet consciously 
related themselves to the problem of delinquency 
or of unadjustment ; they tend to be and do in ac- 
cordance with the tastes of the supposedly normal 
members of the immediate community that is, 
the members neither too rich nor too poor, neither 
geniuses nor subnormals, neither passionate advo- 
cates of reform nor fugitive enemies of society. This 
is the infancy of the community center; it must 
and will face the real problem, pool the interest of 
its members toward great ends, and enlist the trou- 
blesome because yet untamed individual, if it is to 
have a future. 

The reason why the community ' center must in- 
terest itself sympathetically in the delinquent in- 
dividual contains within itself the theory as to the 
nature of delinquency intimated at the beginning 
of this chapter. The delinquent individual, when 
he is not an outright feeble-minded case, or mere 
accidental case, brought into the law's coils through 
fortuitous legal circumstances, or when his delin- 
quency is not a direct result of the law's attempts 
to correct some previous minor delinquency, must 
be viewed as merely an acute manifestation of 
what is sub-acute through a large part of all our 


population. He is the unadjusted individual. His 
overt act, and his criminal classification supposedly 
based on the act, signify little and sometimes less 
than nothing, for they are, in the case of most ju- 
venile "offenders", neither the crime nor the cause 
of the crime. 1 Looking at the fount ainhead of all 
delinquency, juvenile delinquency, we find the 
following list of approximate causes, assigned by 
the Committee on Unadjusted Children of the Peo- 
ple's Institute and the National Committee on 
Prisons and Prison Labor. The list is patently true 
as far as it goes : physical defects ; feeble-minded- 
ness; border-line insanity; vocational unprepared- 
ness ; strong interests with no outlet ; moral mal- 
education; unfortunate school environment; social 
isolation; social misplacement; gangs and other 
unfavorable relationships ; family economic distress ; 
conflict with family; irresponsible parents. 

The Memorandum of the Committee above quoted 
continues: "The same causes produce truancy, 
delinquency and dependency, and the children 
classified under each of these headings experi- 
ence, with varying degrees of emphasis, the same 

But it is evident that the above list of causes of 
delinquency, and any other list which would reason- 
ably cover the facts of experience, is a list of causes 
which are afflicting or undoing multitudes of other 
children and multitudes of other families, of young 
people and old, who never become wards of the 

^'The City Where Crime is Play" (published by the People's Insti- 
tute, 1914). 


State. These persons are never stigmatized as 
criminals, victims, or failures, or even classified as 
" unadjusted", but they are in fact unadjusted, 
unhappy, they represent vocational failures, they 
live within the neurotic zone, and in a sad and 
meaningful sense they are defeated lives. Quoting 
further from the Memorandum of the Committee 
on Unadjusted Children : 

"The unadjusted child is the index of a far vaster 
latent misery among all the people. We class 
ourselves as normal and these problematical persons 
as abnormal ; we dream that underneath our 
imagined good fortune we are not as they are; or 
that they are 'unfortunates', and we think that 
our own children are not bound to the same wheel. 
So we are willing to lavish public expenditures 
and technical resources on the unadjusted child, 
if only he can be kept away from our children and 
out of our immediate sight. And in our community 
and recreation centers, our playgrounds and settle- 
ments, we say : * We are not reform institutions ; 
we work for the average child.' It is a fact that 
most settlements and social centers to-day virtually 
debar the unadjusted child who has passed under 
the law, though few will explicitly say that they 
do. All the while the mass of those who are made 
at home in our neighborhood institutions, have the 
same needs as the unadjusted child and are, save 
for accident or circumstances, as unadjusted as 
he. The 'average' child, and family in fact, need 
the help of the special remedial agency, and the 
special agency to do its work effectively needs to 
operate within the community itself. For in the 
last analysis, unadjustment in the child, feeble- 
mindedness and other inherited pathology debarred, 
is just homelessness, nothing less and nothing more 


a lack of vital and satisfying relation to neigh- 
bors, to work, to the social life through which one's 
personality is discovered and maintained." 

The point of view here suggested, as to the nature 
of delinquency, is especially important. If the 
community produces the delinquent, then we must 
attend to the community. If most men are basi- 
cally sufferers just in the way the delinquent is 
before he is "caught", then we must attend to most 
men. Unadjustment is our gravest human prob- 
lem, without exception. In it the special problem 
of the recognized delinquent must be absorbed, 
and our whole direction of treatment the kind 
of demand which we make on our institutions 
must be altered. The community center is poten- 
tially important in the facing of this issue because 
if it "gets ahead" at all, it must accomplish the 
following results : 

1. It must make the people conscious of their 
problems and of ways of collectively meeting them. 
None of these problems is greater than that of unad- 
justment, and it calls for concerted action; the 
most Utopian reconstruction of the individual will 
not solve it, unless we are to continue isolating the 
individual forever. The crisis will come when he 
"goes back home", and that "home", the neigh- 
borhood, and intimate group must be reconstructed 
from within under its own leadership. A community 
center could be viewed as such a "home" reconstruct- 
ing itself. 

2. The community center must bring the common 
people and the specialist together. Both elements 


require it. Our civilization is specialized. Scien- 
tific endeavor involves specialization. The specialist 
must be conserved, including the specialist in cur- 
ing unadjustment and improving institutions. The 
people must learn how to get at the specialist and 
use him, and this use must be reciprocal. It is in 
the fields of medicine and of the correction of unad- 
justments of the psychic and social kind that this 
mutual usefulness is most required. If we had 
community centers inspired by dynamic interests 
and had them functionally related with the spe- 
cialists who work on delinquency, the dominant 
question of prevention and of after care would be 
met. They cannot be met otherwise. 

3. A final and distinct aim of the community 
center must be to teach the people of a community 
to expect to find good in one another, to solicit 
talent, to devise uses for special talent and special 
experience. If our prisons have many feeble- 
minded inmates, they also have strong-minded 
inmates, and many inmates of the neurotic, the 
functionally disordered type, the type which is 
rich in special talent of many kinds, richer in tem- 
peramental endowment than perhaps any other 
type, and not without inventiveness. The commu- 
nity center needs these qualities. The child or man 
who has been in trouble and who possesses these 
qualities will make good if we can put them to the 
service of the community and win a place in the 
community by serving. We must hasten the time 
when prisoners, adult as well as juvenile, will be 
discreetly paroled to community center service. 


To make this thought real an illustration is quoted 
from the Memorandum previously referred to : 

" A family with eight boys. One boy has passed 
through a Protectory and is now being called upon 
periodically by a parole officer from the Protectory. 
He is out of work and the Employment Bureau of 
the Protectory's After-Care Department is trying 
to get him a position. A local employment bureau 
connected with a settlement is likewise trying to 
place the boy. The next younger brother, who is 
under the supervision of an attendance officer and 
has been threatened with the truant school, has 
also been before the Children's Court for delinquency 
and is on probation, reporting to a probation officer. 
A still younger brother is, according to the father, 
incorrigible. 'He likes nothing but playing the 
violin,' the father says. 

" This remark leads back to the Protectory experi- 
ence of the elder brother. There, according to the 
institution's record, the boy had learned to play the 
cornet ; he had played in the institution's orchestra. 

" The father had once played an instrument. Music 
is the one common interest of the family. Their 
quarters are small, and as the babies had come along, 
one each year, the space for playing music had 
dwindled. At last they ceased to play together. 
The mother is ashamed of her eldest boy because 
he has been to a protectory, but she likes music 

"There is a community center four doors from 
the tenement where this family lives. The distin- 
guishing achievement of this center has been in the 
line of music. Orchestras and choral societies have 
been created there under the leadership of an am- 
ateur genius. 

" The family has never heard of the community 
center. The community center has never heard 


of the family. The probation officer, the parole 
officer, the truant officer, have not consulted one 
another about this group of interrelated cases. None 
of them know the community center and it knows 
none of them. 

" Here is a family with special talents which are 
at the same time their one common, passionate 
interest. These talents are needed and honored 
by the community. Here is a community instru- 
ment developed through years of labor with the 
object of enabling people to give of themselves to 
their neighbors. The family is 'down' in its own 
esteem and in that of its neighbors. 

" To meet this case, there is no dearth of expert 
agencies, no dearth of community resources. There 
appears no intrinsic incapacity in the family. But 
each of these elements of social aid and of human 
hope and worth are moving, as it were, in a void. 
A solitude of the desert surrounds each one. 

"Associate them," the Memorandum concludes, 
" and the whole situation will be transformed." 

Space for further illustrative cases is lacking in 
this article ; the above case alone opens many teas- 
ing vistas. But why, it will be asked, is this chap- 
ter devoted to " must be " and " can be " with no refer- 
ence to actual past achievement ? We must reply : 
The approach to the problem of delinquency, from 
the standpoint of sympathetic community aid, the 
approach of equal to equal, from without the prison 
and within, is new even in popular thought. As 
for the community center, it is as yet more a wide- 
spread and enduring impulse than anything achieved ; 
three presidents of the United States have declared 
it to be the most significant current phase of funda- 


mental democracy, but it is yet infantile, plastic, 
unsure of its own values. For this very reason, 
experiments, demonstrations, courageous applied 
imagination are needed. "Action is the beginning 
of everything." It is likely that the present year, 
in New York City at least, will witness radical 
developments in the bringing together of effort 
in community centers, effort toward the correction 
of unadjustment, and effort toward the moderni- 
zation of prisons. 

Postscript, April, 1917. 

All that is said above has been embodied in a 
project just instituted by the Committee on Unad- 
justed Children of New York. The project is 
called the Community Clearing House. It serves 
an area of about fifteen thousand people in the 
Gramercy district of New York. Through this 
clearing house the experts of public and of private 
social service will be enabled to cooperate more 
intimately with one another and will be placed in 
touch with the organized common people. The 
clearing house is made semi-official through the co- 
operation of the following, among other public de- 
partments : Education, Charities, Correction, Health, 
Tenement, Employment, Hospitals. 

Associated with the clearing house will be a social 
clinic for unadjusted children where experimental 
work in the rehabilitation of delinquent young 
people will be carried out in cooperation with the 
Children's Court, the Compulsory Attendance 
Bureau, and the parole officers of institutions. 


The Community Clearing House and the Social 
Clinic will operate in close relations with the large 
experimental Community Center which is main- 
tained at School 40, Manhattan, by the Training 
School for Community Workers of the People's 


SCIENCE, proceedings of, 
Jan. 1914, 161 

Administration of State penal 
institutions, 92, 94, 95, 

Administrative head of a State 
penal institution, 92, 93, 

Agriculture, a factor in the re- 
habilitation of prisoners, 
United States Department of, 

Alabama, prison contract labor 

not slavery in, 68 
Anderson v. Crescent Garment 
Co., a case to test the 
status of the convict, 52 
argument for defendant, 60 
argument for plaintiff, 52 
opinion, 75 

reply brief for plaintiff, 70 
Anti-slavery clauses in State 

constitutions, 53 
Apprenticeship of minors, 68, 

Attorney General, a prosecuting 

officer, 90 
jurisdiction over federal 

prisons, 88 

jurisdiction over territorial 
prisoners, 86 

Attorney General, Continued 
to order transfer of insane 

prisoners, 87 
to purchase sites for prisons, 


Auburn Prison, 101, 102, 165 
Mutual Welfare League in, 

12, 102 

results of, 107, 108 
Warden Rattigan of, 102 


CHILD IN, 179 
Bastile, wages paid to French 

convicts since fall of, 50 
Battle, George Gordon, 52, 53 
Binding out of paupers, 68, 74 
Board of Standardization for 
correctional institutions, 
143, 174 

Butler, Nicholas Murray, Presi- 
dent of Columbia Univer- 
sity, 92 

TION OF, 168 
lease system in, 168 
San Quentin prison in, 167 
University of, 168 
Capital punishment, 83, 85 
Carter, James M., 13 
Causative factors of crime, 23, 



Chafee, Zechariah, Jr., 60 
Civil Service Commission of 
New York State, manual 
for examination of prison 
and reformatory guard, 
Civil War, 49, 54, 71 

condition of negro slaves be- 
fore, 67 

Clark, Dr. L. Pierce, 30 
Classification of prisoners, 9, 


Columbia University, Graduate 
Department of Highway 
Engineering of, 161 
President Butler of, 92 
Community center, 189, 191, 

193, 196-199 
cooperation with community 

clearing house, 201 
national conference of, 192 
reason for interest of, in the 

delinquent, 193 
use of public school buildings 

for, 192 

Compulsory service, 73 
Connecticut, appropriations for 

reformatory in, 106 
board of directors of, 106- 
109, 111 

a board of parole, 109, 110 
grading of reformatory in- 
mates in, 112 

Mutual Welfare League in 
reformatory of, 108, 109, 
111, 112 
reformatory at Cheshire, 107, 


road work for reformatory in- 
mates in, 110, 111 
wage for reformatory inmates 
in, 110 

" Constitutional History of 

New York State", by C. Z. 

Lincoln, 166, 167, 169, 172 

Constitution of the United 

States, 73, 75, 83 

Thirteenth amendment, 49, 
50, 66 

Willoughby's, 66 
Continental Congress for 
government of North- West 
Territory, 66 

Contract system of convict 
labor, 58, 85, 94, 110 

abandonment in many States 
of, 59 

abolished in New Jersey, 171 

comparison with apprentice- 
ship of minors, 68 

comparison with binding out 
of paupers, 68 

contention that it is not 
slavery, 66, 68 

contract between Rhode 
Island Board of Control 
and Crescent Garment 
Company, 52 

effort to reinstate in New 
York State, 172 

established in New York 
State by 1828, 167 

existed contemporaneously 
with adoption of constitu- 
tion in Rhode Island, 78 

exploitation of prisoner under, 
85, 168 

federal legislation to over- 
come, 171 

first evidence in Rhode Island 
of, 56 

held to be in contravention 
of Rhode Island constitu- 
tion, 52 



Contract system of convict 
labor, Continued 

in Rhode Island, 52, 56, 60, 
64, 67, 71 

in States which prohibit 
slavery, 73 

litigation decided by Supreme 
Court of U. S. in connec- 
tion with, 67 

long establishment in Rhode 
Island, 64, 65, 69 

Maine contract, 78 

national concerted action 
against, 169, 170 

not slavery if contractor can- 
not enforce control, 75, 78, 

not slavery in Alabama, 68 

not slavery in Illinois and 
Georgia, 69 

primarily a benefit to the con- 
tractor, 74 

prohibited in federal prisons, 

prohibited in prisons where 
federal prisoners are con- 
fined, 87 

recognized by legislators, 65 

statute authorizing, in Rhode 
Island, 51 


Convict, labor of the, 51, 52, 
56, 58-60, 63-35, 67-69, 
72-75, 77, 78 

rights of, in Rhode Island, 
60, 61, 70 

state in loco parentis to, 74 

status of, 51, 52, 55, 78, 79 

wage for the, 50, 54, 56-58, 
63, 96, 138, 139, 174, 

Convict labor, contract sys- 
tem of, 51, 52, 56, 58, 59, 
64-69, 71, 73-75, 78, 79, 
85, 94, 171, 172 
shop labor, 56 
solitary labor, 56 
wage for, 50, 54, 56-58, 63, 

96, 138, 139, 174, 175 
"Convict Labor for Road 
Work ".Bulletin 414, U.S. 
Department of Agriculture, 

"Convict Road Work for 
Misdemeanant Prisoners", 
James L. Stamford, 161 
Cooperative Consumers' Move- 
ment, 191, 192 

Corporal punishment pro- 
hibited in Rhode Island, 
55, 59, 72 

Correctional institutions, board 
of standardization for, 143 
cooperation with other 
State boards and commis- 
sions, 146 

coordination of, 144 
educational directors for, 144, 


occupations for, 147-150 
State superintendent of in- 
dustries for, 143 
supervisors of shop work for, 

144, 145 


Court of General Sessions in 

the City of New York, 7 

Courts, function of, 4 

Crescent Garment Company, 

contract with Rhode Island 

State Board of Control, 52 

Criminal records of prisoners, 7 



Cullen, Peter, 183 

Curtis, General Newton Mar- 
tin, speech before the 
House of Representatives, 
June 9, 1882, 83 

Death penalty 

Declaration of Independence, 

Delinquent, 189, 193, 194, 196, 

Department of Agriculture, 84, 

91, 161 

Department of Interior, 85, 89 
government hospital under, 

Department of Justice, 85,86, 

charge of Bureau of Criminal 

identification, 90 
charge of convicts in govern- 
ment hospital, 90 
charge of federal prisons and 

prisoners, 90 

charge of Territorial pris- 
oners, 90 

Department of Labor, 85 
Bureau of Labor Statistics 

under, 89 
Department of State, 85 

International Prison Com- 
missioner under, 88 
Department of War, 85 

control over military prisons, 


control over prisons in 
Panama, Porto Rico, and 
the Philippines, 89 
Discharge, preparedness for, 

District of Columbia, insane 

asylum of, 87 
correctional institutions in 
report to Secretary of the 
Interior, 90 
penitentiary of, 87 
"Dope", 120 

"California Labor Legisla- 
tion", 167, 168 

Educational directors for cor- 
rectional institutions, 144, 

Employment of prisoners at 
hard labor not slavery, 69 

BOR, 89 

Federal Constitution 


Federal Courts, supervision 
over United States Mar- 
shals, 90 

Federal Government, need for 
leadership in penal field, 

policy of boarding out pris- 
oners, 84 

Federal Judges, 86 

Federal legislation to regulate 
interstate commerce in 
convict-made goods, 170, 

Federal Office of Prisons, a 
clearing house for federal 
prisons, 91 

suggested by National Com- 
mittee on Prisons and 
Prison Labor, 91 



Federal Office of Prisons, 


to insure leadership for 
federal penal system, 92 
Federal penal system, 84, 85, 91 
Federal prisoners, deduction of 
time for good conduct of ,86 
increase in number of, 85 
in State and county institu- 
tions, 84, 86 

responsibility for, centered 
in Department of Justice, 
under custody of United 

States Marshals, 86 
withdrawal of, from State 
and county institutions, 87 
Federal prisons, Department of 
Justice control over, 85, 90 
erection of, 90 
industries in, 87 
selection of sites for, 90 
should be governmental 

laboratories, 91 
Feeble-minded, 154 
in prison, 8 

in reception prison, 35 
Royal Commission on care of, 

in Great Britain, 8 
Forces operative in control and 
direction of human con- 
duct, 26, 27 
French Revolution, 50 

effect of, on treatment of 
French convicts, 50 
Fry, Elizabeth, 165 

Gary system of education, 133 
Georgia, prison contract labor 
not slavery in, 69 

George Junior Republic, 140 
George, William R., "Nothing 

without Labor", 140 
Glueck, Dr. Bernard H., 29 
Goddard, Henry H., 8 
Goldsborough, Phillips Lee, 


Gompers, Samuel, 169, 173 
Grading of prisoners in Con- 
necticut, 112 


Henderson, Charles Richmond, 
' ' Modern Prison Systems ' ', 

"Historical Sketch of the 
Knights of Labor", 
Carroll D. Wright, 170 

Hix, Thomas W., 78 

Homicide, definitions of, in 
different States, 3 

"Honor Men", 153 

"Honor system", 105 

Hospital Development Com- 
mission of New York 
State, 10 

Howard, John, 165 


prison contract labor not 

slavery in, 69 

restriction of prison manu- 
facture in, 169 
Illiteracy, in United States, 

relation of good and bad 

roads to, 159, 160 
Indeterminate sentence, 14, 18, 


Indiana, anti-slavery clause in 
constitution of, 53 



Indiana, Continued 

restriction of prison manufac- 
ture in, 169 
Industrial Commission of 1900, 


Industrial training for the pris- 
oner, 127 
cooperation with organized 

labor in, 146 
farm training, 136, 147 
in trades, 146 
maintenance occupations, 

134, 135 
productive incentive lacking 

for, 128, 134, 135 
program for, 130, 131, 132 
International Prison Commis- 
sion, United States adher- 
ing member of, 88 
President appoints com- 
missioner, 89 

International relationships, im- 
prisonment for violation 
of, 83 
Involuntary servitude, 49, 


reasons for inclusion in 
Thirteenth Amendment, 


Kir by, Dr. George H., 30 
Kirchwey, Professor George W., 

15, 101 
Knights of Labor, 169, 170 


different States, 3 
hanging for, in New York 
State, 5 

Lease system of convict labor, 
exploitation of prisoner 
under, 85, 168 

Lincoln, Abraham, 49, 102 
Lincoln, C. Z., "Constitutional 
History of New York 
State", 166, 167, 169, 


Maine, Hix, Thomas W., 
Warden, State prison, 78 
prison contract in, 78 
restriction of prison manu- 
facture in, 169 

Manning, John H., 173, 175 
Market for institutional goods, 


Maryland, Governor Golds- 
borough of, 171 
house of correction of, 171, 


penal penitentiary commis- 
sion of, 171 

prison contracts in, 171 
restriction on prison manu- 
facture in, 169 

Massachusetts, restriction on 
prison manufacture in, 169 
Maxcy, Henry, 78 
Mental defectives, like routine 

work, 142 
segregation of, 145 
Michigan, anti-slavery clause 

in constitution of, 53 
Military prison at Fort Leaven- 
worth, 88 
Miller, Justice, 66 
Minnesota, restriction of prison 
manufacture in, 169 



"Modern Prison Systems", 

Charles Richmond Hen- 
derson, 165 
Moses, 4 

Mutual Welfare League, 12, 13 
address before, at Sing Sing, 


aims of, 104, 105 
board of control of, at 

Cheshire Reformatory, 109 
board of delegates of, at 

Sing Sing, 102 
court, 103 
differs from "Honor system", 

duties of officers of, at Sing 

Sing, 120-122 
escape of officer of, 183 
established at Connecticut 

Reformatory, 112 
executive committee of, 102 
extended to Sing Sing, 102 
first meeting of, 102 
first meeting of, at Cheshire, 

inmates' court at Cheshire, 

membership of executive 

board of, 103 
organization of, 102 
paroles recommended by 

Cheshire branch, 109 
privileges of, 103, 108, 111 
results at Auburn prison, 107, 

Mutual Welfare System, 182 


National Committee on Prisons 
and Prison Labor, 51, 90, 
101, 161, 172 

National Committee on Prisons 
and Prison Labor, Con- 

case to test the status of the 
convict, 52 

employment committee of, 

joint committee of, on unad- 
justed children, 189, 194 

psychiatric clinic under aus- 
pices of, 10 

report on Maryland house of 
correction made by, 180 

suggestions for establishment 
of federal office of prisons, 

National Conference of Com- 
munity Centers, 192 
National Democratic Platform 

of 1916, 171 
Navy Department, control over 

naval prisoners by, 89 
Neighborhood association, 191 
New Jersey, contract system of 
convict labor abolished in, 

New prison system, address by 
William H. Wadhams on, 

duties of Mutual Welfare 
League officers under, 120, 
121, 122, 123 

duties of prison officers under, 
120, 121 

effect on prisoners of, 183 

schools and industries under, 


New York, adoption of Penn- 
sylvania prison system by, 

branding of prison-made 
goods in, 166, 170 



New York, Continued 

choice of institutions and of 

length of sentence in, 9 
civil service commission of, 117 
civil service examination for 

prison officers in, 117 
clearing house for prisoners 

of, 29 

commission to examine the 
department of State pris- 
ons of, 172 
commission on prison reform 

of, 30, 101, 102 
constitutional history of, 166, 

167, 169, 172 
contract system of convict 

labor in, 167 

Department of Labor of, bul- 
letin of, March, 1910, 170 
federation of labor of, 173 
hanging for larceny in, 5 
hospital development com- 
mission of, 10 
laws of, 11, 166 
mechanics of, active against 

prison competition, 169 
new prison commission of, 10 
no classification of prisoners 

in, 93 

parole law of 1915 of, 15 
printers' union in, 146 
reception prison for prisoners 

of, 25, 30 

restriction on prison manu- 
facture in, 169 
sentence fixed by judge in, 14 
Sing Sing prison, 6, 10-13, 27, 
29, 30, 36, 102, 118, 165, 
169, 172, 173, 175, 183, 191 
State hospital for insane at 

Matteawan, 36 
statute of 1801, 166 

New York, Continued 

stove industry in the prisons 

of, 169 
New York City, community 

clearing house of, 200, 201 
court of general sessions in, 7 
ex-convict in, 180 
experience of judges in regard 

to indeterminate sentence 

in, 18 

Newgate prison built in, 165 
parole commission of, 15-17 
peoples' institute of, 189, 194, 

" Nothing without Labor ", 

William R. George, 140 



Ohio, anti-slavery clause in con- 
stitution of, 53 

restriction on prison manu- 
facture in, 169 
Old Prison System, 117-119 

brutality of, 104, 105 

duties of officers at Sing Sing 
under, 118, 119 

punishments under, 120 
Organized labor, 94 

need for cooperation with, in 
prison industrial work, 146 

proposal by, for distribution 
of prison-made goods, 171 

proposal by, of federal legis- 
lation to regulate interstate 
commerce in convict-made 
goods, 171 

suggestions by, of " State use ' ' 
system, 172 

willing to receive ex-prisoners 
into unions, 175 


Osborne, Thomas Mott, '6, 13, 
101, 107, 172, 173, 183, 
address on prison reform, 172 


Parole, commission of the city 

of New York, 15-17 
from Cheshire Reformatory, 


Penal institutions, administra- 
tion of, 92, 97 
administrative head of, 92 
training in, 95 

"Penal Servitude", E. Stagg 
Whitin, 50, 93, 167, 170, 
171, 180 
Pennsylvania, prison society 

founded in, 181 
prison system of, 165 
restriction of prison manu- 
facture in, 169 
statute of March, 1780, 63 
People's Institute of New York 
City, joint committee of, 
on unadjusted children, 
189, 194 
the city where crime is play, 


training schools for commu- 
nity workers, 201 
Phenomenon common to of- 
fenders, 25 

Philippine Islands, prisons 

under War Department, 89 

Plessy v. Ferguson, definition of 

slavery in, 53, 76 
Porto Rico, prisons under War 
Department, 89 

President of United States, ap- 
points international prison 
commissioner, 89 
Prison, a community, 94-97, 

assignment to work in, 128, 

control of, 93 

diet in the, 96 

difference between industrial 
plant of, and ordinary in- 
dustrial plant, 94 

distribution of commodities 
of, 93, 95 

educational and vocational 
purposes of, 129 

educational work in, 130 

farm training in, 96, 136-138, 

maintenance occupations in, 
134, 135 

organization of work in, 96 

population of, 93, 127 

production and distribution 
of commodities in, 93, 95, 

productive work in, 130 

punitive industries in, 141, 

purchasing department for, 

trade work in, 146 

vocational guidance in, 146 

vocational work in, 130 

wage for work in, 50, 54, 56- 
58, 96, 110, 139, 174, 

Prisoners' Aid Societies, 181, 


Prison officer, duties of, under 
old and new prison sys- 
tems, 117-123 

appointed under civil service 
in New York State, 117' 

no special training for, 117, 

productive incentive lacking 

for the, 128 

Prison reform, address on by 
Thomas Mott Obsorne, 172 

advocated by National Demo- 
cratic Platform of 1916, 

need for cooperation with 
organized labor in, 146 

New York State Commission 
on, 30, 101, 102 

relation of industrial training 

to, 127 
Public, defender, 157 

prosecutor, 157 

schools, Gary plan in, 133 
self-government in, 133 
use of buildings of, for 
community centers, 192 
Punishment of the criminal 
under jurisdiction of the 
several States, 83 



PRISON, 102 
Reception prison, 25, 30 

adjustment of individual to 

environment in, 28 
articulation of, with an edu- 
cational institution, 29 
buildings required for, 39 
feeble-minded in, 35 

Reception prison, Continued 

general features of, 32 

hospital and dispensary treat- 
ment in, 33 

infirm and crippled in, 37 

intensive study of the indi- 
vidual in, 28 

internal administration of, 

medical examination in, 32, 

mental and sociological study 
in, 38 

method of evaluation of 
prison population, 94 

normal group in, 35 

personnel of, 42 

recommended by New York 
State Federation of Labor, 

sexual psychopathies in, 37 

special group in, 35 

special mental cases in, 36 

transfer of prisoners from, 44 
Republican platform of 1864, 


Revolutionary War, 165 
Rhode Island, acts of, 70, 71 

case to test the status of the 
convict in, 51 

constitution of, 51, 56, 58, 
65, 67, 68, 71, 73, 75-77 

constitutional provision 

against cruel punishments 
in, 55 

contract system of convict 
labor in, 52, 56, 60, 64, 67, 

convict not a slave under 
existing contracts in, 68, 79 

corporal punishment pro- 
hibited in, 55 



Rhode Island, Continued 

definition of slavery accepted 
in, 60 

general laws of, 51, 54, 55, 57, 
60, 64, 68 

prison contract in, 52, 54 

prohibition of slavery in con- 
stitution of, 60 

regulations for discharge of 
convicts in, 57 

rights of convicts in, 60, 61, 70 

slavery in, 75 

State Board of Charities and 
Correction of, 57 

State Board of Control and 
Supply of, 51, 52, 54, 55, 

State Board of Prison In- 
spectors of, 56-58, 64, 71 

wage to convicts in, 54, 56-58 
Rice, Herbert A., 60 
Road work, by inmates of 
Cheshire Reformatory, 110 

recommended for employ- 
ment of convicts by New 
York State Federation of 
Labor, 174 
Roux, Roger, "Le travail dans 

les prisons", 50 
Royal Commission on Care of 
Feeble-minded in Great 
Britain, 8 

San Quentin Prison, 167 
Secretary of Labor, reports of, 
to Congress in regard to 
convict labor, 89 
Secretary of the Interior, cor- 
rectional institutions in 
District of Columbia re- 
port to, 90 

Secretary of the Interior, 

first responsibility of, for 

federal prisoners, 87 
to purchase sites for federal 

prisons, 87 
to transfer insane prisoners, 

Self-government, 95, 107, 112- 

114, 172 

in community centers, 192 
in public schools, 131 
Sentence fixed by the judge in 

New York State, 14 
Servi Peonce, 50 
Sing Sing Prison, abandonment 

of, as a prison recom- 
mended, 30 
a clearing house for New 

York State prisoners, 29 
built in 1827, 165 
address before Mutual Wel- 
fare League of, 169 
commitments from, to 

Matteawan State Hospital, 


criminal records of men dis- 
charged from, 6 
increased production under 

the new prison system in, 

labor conference at, 173, 

Mutual Welfare League in, 

12, 13, 102, 183 
Osborne, Thomas Mott, 

Warden of, 173, 191 
provision for demolition of 

cell-block of, 11 
provision for new prison in 

place of, 30 
psychiatric clinic at, 10, 30 



Sing Sing Prison, Continued 

under new prison system, 

work in laboratory at, 27 
Slave, condition of, before the 
Civil War, 67 

labor inefficient, 172. 

rights of, 54, 55 

work of the negro as a, 139 
Slavery, 51, 61, 62, 72, 139, 

abolition of, by Thirteenth 
Amendment, 75 

anti-slavery clauses in State 
constitutions, 53 

as punishment for crime, 49 

characteristics of, 54, 72 

compulsory labor on streets 
not, 69 

compulsory service by mer- 
chant sailors not, 69 

contract prison labor not, in 
Illinois and Georgia, 69 

contract system of prison 
labor in States which pro- 
hibit, 73 

definitions of, 53, 60, 61, 76 

did Maine contract create? 

does Thirteenth Amendment 
sanction, as punishment 
for crime ? 49, 67, 79 

elements of, 53 

employment of prisoners at 
hard labor not, 69 

has contract convict labor 
the elements of? 52, 66 

imposition of similar dis- 
qualification upon off- 
spring, 62, 64 

not determined by wage or 
lack of wage, 65 

Slavery, Continued 

prohibition in Rhode Island 
narrower than in federal 
constitution, 67 
service for life, 62, 63 
status of, not established by 

test case, 77, 78 
termination of, advocated in 
Republican Platform of 
1864, 66 

termination of confinement 
at fixed date not inconsis- 
tent with, 55 

United States constitutional 
provision regarding, 49, 50, 
66, 67, 72-77, 79 
working out fines not, 69 
Social center, 185, 191 
Solitary confinement, 165 
Southern slave owner, power of, 

over slave, 55 
Stamford, James L., "Convict 
Road Work for Misde- 
meanant Prisoners", 161 
State- Board of Charities and 
Correction in Rhode Island, 

State Board of Control and 
Supply in Rhode Island, 
51, 52, 54, 55, 59, 69 
contract with Crescent Gar- 
ment Company, 52 
State Board of Prison Inspec- 
tors in Rhode Island, re- 
ports of, 56-58, 64, 71 
State Superintendent of Indus- 
tries for Correctional In- 
stitutions, 143, 144 
"State Use" System, 172, 175 
Summer, David H., 78 
Sundry Civil Appropriations 
Bill, June 12th, 1917, 87 



Supervisor of shop work for 
correctional institutions, 
144, 145 

Supreme Court of the United 
States, litigation connected 
with prison contracts in, 67 
only court which can inter- 
pret Thirteenth Amend- 
ment, 79 


Territorial prisoners, under ju- 
risdiction of Attorney Gen- 
eral, 86, 90 

"The Caged Man", E. Stagg 
Whitin, 169 

"The City Where Crime is 
Play", published by Peo- 
ple's Institute of New York, 

Theory, of absolute psychic de- 
terminism, 23 

of general governmental su- 
pervision, 84 

Thirteenth Amendment to the 
Constitution of the United 
States, 49, 53, 73-75, 79 

Token money, 96, 139, 140 

Training School for Community 
Workers, 201 

" Travail dans les Prisons ", le, 
by Roger Roux, 50 


report of committee on, 189, 

194, 195, 198, 199 
United States, adhering mem- 
ber of International Prison 
Commission, 88, 89 
census of 1910, 7 
compiled statutes of, 86-88 

United States, Continued 

Constitution of, 49, 50, 53, 66, 
67, 72, 73-77, 79 

Declaration of Independence 
of, 158 

Department of Agriculture, 
84, 91, 161 

employment of specialists in 
vocational education by, 

illiteracy in, 158, 159, 160 

marshals, 86, 90 

need for good roads in, 158 

peonage cases, 69 

statutes at large (1896), 89 

Supreme Court of, 67, 79 

three presidents of, favor 
community center move- 
ment, 199 

Willoughby's Constitution 

of, 66 

University of California, pub- 
lications in economics, 

"Utilization of Convict Labor 
in Highway Construction 
in the North, The", 
Sydney Wilmot, 161 
"Utilization of Convict Labor 
in Highway Construction 
in the South, The", James 
Wilmot, 161 

PRISON, 145 

New Prison System", 172 

Wage for convicts, advocated 
by New York State Feder- 
ation of Labor, 174, 175 
for overtime work, 50 



Wage for convicts, Continued 
for Rhode Island convicts, 

54, 56-58 

in Connecticut, 110 
never established in this 

country, 50 

not the right of the convict 

in England or Germany, 50 

not thought of at the time the 

Rhode Island constitution 

was adopted, 58 

right of French convicts, 50 

self-adjusting wage scale, 96 

to be paid in token money, 96 

to increase output, 50 

towards payment of fine, 56 

will result in profit to the 

State, 139 

War Department, Fort Leaven- 
worth restored to, 88 
Washington, Booker T., " Work- 
ing with the Hands", 139 

Whitin, E. Stagg, 50, 93, 101, 

"Penal Servitude", 50, 167, 

"The Caged Man", 169 

Willoughby, Professor, "Con- 
stitution of the United 
States", 66 

Wilmot, James, "The Utiliza- 
tion of Convict Labor in 
Highway Construction in 
the South", 161 

Wilmot, Sydney, "The Utiliza- 
tion of Convict Labor in 
Highway Construction in 
the North", 161 

Wirt School, 191 

Wright, Carroll D., "Historical 
Sketch of the Knights of 
Labor", 170 





This book is due on the last date stamped below, or 
on the date to which renewed. 

are subject to immediate recall. 




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